Thursday, January 17, 2013

Can one regret a prayer?

The morning my eighteen year old daughter left Colorado on a road trip with her friend W, I told them to wear their seat belts.  Susanna and I stood in the street behind the tightly packed car. The girls promised to call from Montana, their first stop. I kissed my daughter and they drove away.

Susanna and I today
I stood in the street and asked God to use the trip to get Susanna's attention.  

This may seem like a strange prayer. But my deepest desire was that Susanna encounter God in some way on this trip. I wanted her to turn to Him for guidance and make a wise choice for college. I wanted Him to woo her into a faith relationship. 

I also knew that I had sought that relationship when life seemed to take control out of my hands. In my way of thinking, getting her attention would most likely involve some difficulty. But I didn’t want catastrophe, so I irreverently amended the request: "Don't kill her in the process."

Before the day ended an accident catapulted Susanna from the little station wagon. The injuries left her in a coma for fourteen precarious days.

God got my attention.

While she was unconscious but healing, I catalogued innumerable mercies. Even though the girls traveled a typically deserted Montana highway, a state patrolman had been near enough to see the dust the rollover raised. 

Despite small cracks in her spinal column she could move her arms and legs. Although she didn't open her eyes or speak, she lifted a finger when her dad asked if she could hear him. 

So many of our needs were generously supplied. The Ronald McDonald House had space for me to live while she was hospitalized. Loved ones deluged us with long distance calls, cards, and flowers.  Our church raised money to help pay for uncovered costs. 

Hospital staff went out of their way to encourage me. Following their advice I kept a journal and made time to be away from the hospital.  One evening I attended an Alison Krause concert.  When she sang "I'd rather be in the palm of His hand..." I felt like the song had been chosen for me. be continued next week

Have you seen God's mercy during a crisis? Encourage us with a short comment about your experience.

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