Dear Fantastic Prayer Warriors,
Anna’s 4th birthday is today (yesterday) and what a unique vantage point the Lord has given us, “tomorrow isn’t a guarantee for anyone” I remember the first few days of her life when you helped us surrender Anna up to our Sovereign Father not knowing if she would make it another day, water on the brain, acid in the blood, unstable blood pressure, tubes, wires, heat lamp, and the enduring our hearts went through. Naively we knew that as believers in Christ, God wanted all of our tomorrows and todays, this trial made that surrender of the future actual. So we stopped making our plans and went with what was before us, God with us.
I recall the prayers of faith we prayed and how some were filled with much repetition and begging. I recall the heaviness of amending the prayers as we got more and more news of Anna’s state, as the requests indicated more hardships God was increasing. We prayed:
-for a healthy baby
-for no brain damage
-for the blood pressure to stabilize
-for the ventricles in her brain to start working
-for no seizures,
-for no surgery
-for a successful surgery
I have learned that there is providence and grace in submitting to God’s answers to prayers rather than insisting bitterly on my way and losing faith.
Everyday God spoke to us in His Word. I remember asking you all for Bible passages to give to us: Psalm 139 and Isaiah 40 were more than passages of Scripture they were a living shelter where a right understanding of God and our circumstance met. We lived there rent free, what a dwelling place. We were able to trust that God was bigger; having the foreknowledge of Anna’s days and ability. We were the ones totally surprised, not God. Certain Bible promises were posted on Anna’s hospital bed to be frequently before us.
During this hospitalization we found a verse that became something we committed to God for Anna’s life and our life with her its Isaiah 33:2. “LORD, be gracious to us! We wait for You. Be our strength every morning and our salvation in time of trouble.” We have prayed this verse back to God many times; it has always stood strong as a verse unto itself. However, I have learned a few contextual things that make it even more special. Here Isaiah talks of a destroyer (Assyria) coming and Judah has exhausted all their abilities. This verse is more of a prayer; Judah has come to realize (again) that God is the only one who can help them. Isaiah is pleading for God’s attributes of grace, strength, and salvation. Likewise, we have come to depend on God for those attributes regarding all things Anna. Like Judah, we feel we have exhausted all the tests, medicines, treatments, surgeries, and therapies. That is why we cry out to God so similarly. Only God will bring the healing that will encourage our hearts and will build us up in Him until that day. I find myself more interested about testimonies of God’s healing than keeping up with the Jones’ (the special needs parenting edition).
One of the commentaries I read said that this verse reminded him to “never underestimate the power of a praying minority.” Thank you for being that minority for Anna. I sincerely have a humbling debt of great spiritual worth for all the prayers you have prayed in faith regarding Anna. We ask for more because we know that waiting on God is the only way we can be our very best for Anna.
-for Anna to recover from her current illness that includes an ear infection
-for increased ability to hold up her head,
-for the ability to swallow and keep her throat clear while she sleeps
-for approval of a van ramp conversion through insurance
-for God our Perfect Heavenly Father to be gracious to us, by opening doors and guiding our steps for Anna’s future
-for daily strength and renewal because we want to serve Anna and others in Jesus’ name
-for Salvation and its many promises to compel us onward with great joy
-for Anna to know the company and love of Jesus so deeply because of her perfect childlikeness
Thanksgiving has been on my heart all day in regards to the blessing that beloved Anna is. Sharing with you is genuinely joy-filled, All glory and Praise to our God.
Year 5 here we go!
Love,Nic, Lindsey, Anna, and Simon