People ask me to pray for them on a regular basis. It comes along with my job and I have come to not only embrace it but at times endure it. I get it, I mean I work for Jesus and part of that job description is to lift up prayers from those who ask. It’s hard at times. I’m not one of those ministers that just say, “I’ll be praying for you” and walk away like it is just a parting comment and pleasant way to move on about my day. Jesus will know when I’m slacking. There are days I don’t feel very much like praying. Not even for myself much less a list of others. It can wear a guy out, praying and all. Then there are times like yesterday.
While in the waiting room of the doctor’s office, yesterday I began a conversation with Jim. (Jim is not his real name, as there is anonymity in my prayer list) Jim asked me to pray for him. Jim explained how he and his wife after having raised a son and daughter of their own decided under God’s calling to adopt two girls from China. I expressed how awesome that was. Jim asked me to pray for the girls. No biggie I thought. He proceeded to tell me about eighteen months ago, his wife passed away after a horrible brief battle with cancer. Then just three months after his wife passed away, his adult son was arrested and sentenced to spend the rest of his natural life in prison. His daughter in her twenties stepped in to help raise the girls. Up until this January, when she died suddenly of an undiagnosed brain tumor. He was all the girls had left. They had planned a trip back to China leaving today so the girls now 16 and 13 could visit their home land. Jim had to back out of the trip because he had just been diagnosed with advanced stage four lymphoma and was advised not to take the trip. They were to travel with a group of ten other parents who all adopted girls at the same time. This group agreed to surround the girls and take them on the trip anyway. Jim’s prayer request was to pray for their safe travel and that God cold allow him to live at least five more years as then both girls would be over 18 and or legal age.
At that moment I felt unworthy as Jim asked me to pray for him and the girls. At that moment my heart broke for Jim. There in the waiting room, my life problems seemed so insignificant. I felt like a wimp. God opened me up when I met Jim. I realized what an honor and privilege it is to add Jim and the girls to my list. God used this stranger to reaffirm what we do as ministers are important in the lives of those who suffer. Thanks Jim for the lesson on life and yes I did pray for you and the girls today.