My daughter texted me to share that her daughter, 16 months old yesterday, had put her pants on by herself this morning.
I asked if she’d noticed other things like making her own decisions about inside or outside play with a sweet little “nope”.
I asked if she’d taken her to the bathroom with her and seen her tear a sheet of tissue as if to wipe. Yes, she had, my daughter answered but sweet little “ELB” wants nothing to do with the potty. I answered,
“She’s observing and strategizing.”
Last week I followed a flow chart created to help me understand the flow through the Book of Genesis. The kind of chart with lines dropping down interrupted by some action or moving forward through the process.
I began to imagine the route of a prayer, a prayer that cries out for resolution or a prayer that longs to be known by God.
Maybe the simple one that says thank you, another morning I am well or a more spontaneously overtaking one that comes from a song you join in the praise, you are so grateful to be connected with God.
I wondered about the delivery to the throne of God. Is Jesus able to one by one say, “Father, Lisa just had a moment, she’s afraid or Father, look now, she just got a glimpse of you and she’s better.”?
I wonder such things.
Why some prayers go unanswered.
Why some are answered when we’ve decided they weren’t heard. Why there must surely be some strategy in God’s timing that we are asked to trust.
To trust what we can’t see yet.
Last Sunday, the pastor talked about certainty and asked how long it had been since we remembered big ways in our lives that God showed up.
Remembered the answered prayers. I thought of a few.
My son was certain he would not pass the PT test at the military college his “knob” year. He’d been told sit-ups are a challenge for someone as tall as you, at least when they’re timed. A few people, the pastor who baptized him, his little boy Sunday school teacher and I prayed. God woke me up at 5 that morning, the test was scheduled soon after. I prayed. He passed and let me know in a text. He is now a Citadel and grad school graduate working for an accounting firm.
My daughter’s heart condition lingered several years, the place in her heart the surgeon called a little “stick of dynamite”was in a delicate place. Every procedure they simply couldn’t ablate it. Every procedure, we waited and prayed.
The final one, I was waiting with her sweet husband. The surgeon came out and as with each time before, he just couldn’t synchronize his instrument with the misfiring in her heart.
I nodded in acceptance as he told us he wasn’t giving up yet and then I walked away. I found the tiny chapel prayer space the size of a closet.
I cried and I prayed.
Shortly after, I sat with my son in law in acceptance and waiting. The surgeon returned and he told us so very explicitly the strategy he used and then he told us in words we could hold on to. He’d gone in to the location he knew from her records the malfunction occurred and he “schnockered” the area he told us.
He was optimistic.
A few years later, they are parents of a girl that wouldn’t have been advisable before. Her heart is well.
Other prayers have been unanswered and while they bring sorrow upon remembrance, I’ve accepted the response God chose was better based on His observation of the whole picture, the sovereign strategy I am not capable of understanding.
I just need to believe that my prayers are heard. I have some big ones these days.
I need to believe the incomprehensible truth that every single other person’s are heard in equal measure.
I need to believe because I have seen and I need to never doubt because of those things I did not see and won’t ever until eternity.
“Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.”
John 20:29-31 ESV
I pray you believe in new ways today.