A Mother’s Faith – Part 2

But he did not answer her a word. And his disciples came and begged him, saying, “Send her away, for she is crying out after us.” He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” But she came and knelt before him, saying, “Lord, help me.” Matthew 15:23-25 ESV

I confess that I left you hanging yesterday in the middle of the story of Joey and his mom. I meant for it to be a single post, but to give even the most minimum of details ended up a bit long for one day. Yesterday we left off with Joey lying in a coma, due to a drug overdose. Today let’s follow how Evelyn’s faith was tested. Just like the woman in today’s Bible verses, Evelyn, wouldn’t quit. Even when it seemed that God seemed silent, and others couldn’t understand she desperately asked for a miracle. When no one else had hope to give, these mothers just kept believing.

Then one afternoon I came in the room and Joey’s eyes were open. He couldn’t speak, but he was looking around the room. That day as we prayed for Joey, it felt as if God was on the move! When I returned the following week, Joe was sitting up, and both Eveyln and his dad were there, getting Joey ready to go home. As I walked in with a big smile. Evelyn greeted me enthusiastically, Joey’s dad shook my hand, but Joey looked perplexed. “Oh, this is Pastor Pete,” his mom said. He’s been coming and praying for you every week. Joey smiled and shook my hand.

“Mom’s been telling me about you. Glad to meet you!” Joey told me.

“You really don’t remember me at all?” I asked in surprise.

“No, sorry. I just heard about your visits from my parents.”

As I write today’s story, I am reminded that what matters most to God is faith. You see these two stories are really not just about two young people who experienced a miracle. These stories are about the miracles of the faith of two mothers who were tested in the fire and found their prayers answered by a God who never gives up. From them we find out that no matter what things look like and no matter what anyone says, God is listening, He is near, He cares, and He still answers prayer!

A Mother’s Faith – Part One

But immediately a woman whose little daughter had an unclean spirit heard of him and came and fell down at his feet. Mark 7:24-25 ESV

It might surprise you to learn, that in long term care facilities, there are also teen-agers in diabetic comas, twenty-somethings, who have suffered strokes and young people with lifelong disabilities who can no longer be cared for by their families. One of these I met in the respiratory ward of a large facility where I volunteered. I was going to visit a friend when I happened to glance in the open door of the adjacent room and saw a teenaged boy lying in the bed. He lay silently with his eyes closed. A lady was sitting quietly by him holding his hand so I paused for a minute, cleared my throat, and introduced myself as a volunteer chaplain.

She turned to smile, then looked back to the boy saying, “Hi, I’m Evelyn* this is my son Joe. Joey’s just seventeen.”  With that she fell silent. So I walked in and sat down. It wasn’t long before she poured out the story of how Joey had gone from being involved in church, being an eagle scout, to experimenting with drugs. One thing had led to another until the night she and her husband got the phone call that Joey had overdosed at a party. After a few weeks in the hospital, Joe still hadn’t regained consciousness and he required a machine to keep him breathing, and so he had come to the room where I met him that day.

While we sat quietly, I asked “Does he like music?” pointing to my guitar.

“Oh Joey loves music!” she exclaimed happily.

“Well he might not know the kind of songs I play, but let’s give it a try.” I suggested.

That afternoon when I played a couple of songs and prayed, was the first of many weekly visits. Though Joey’s condition didn’t change, his mom, just like the woman in today’s passage never gave up and never stopped praying. You see, the story in the Bible is not really about a little girl who needed help and today’s story is not about Joey. The lesson we all need to learn is how to have the faith of these mothers!

Stay tuned tomorrow for the rest of this story!

Photo by Ron Lach on Pexels.com

Being a Friend of Jesus

When Joseph Scriven wrote the words of his now famous hymn, they were actually a poem he sent to comfort his mother who was very sick and missing him terribly back in Ireland. Several years previously, Scriven had lost the love of his life just week’s before they were to be married and in his time of grief he dedicated his life to God and there found great joy and peace. Hearing word of his mother’s ill health he sent these words of the hope he had found. Today they are still sung on job sites by brick layers and in corn fields by farmers. People lying in hospital rooms as well as standing in the largest cathedrals have been encouraged to know that no matter how important others think we are or how much money we have in the bank, there is nothing we could ever have that compare to the riches and power of a life lived as one of the friends of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

What a friend we have in Jesus
All our sins and griefs to bear
What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer
Joseph Scriven 1855

Prayer is nothing else than being on terms of friendship with God – Teresa of Avila

Bella’s Song -Update

As I shared last month; one of our residents was excited about sharing this song which she wrote back in 1990. Since the only available recording was on a cassette tape

(This is a cassette – for those of the younger generation}

person holding cassette
Photo by Stas Knop on Pexels.com

So Bella agreed that we could record a video version of her song during our Friday morning singing time at Life Care Center. Bear in mind that I recorded this copyrighted song with her permission so if you should share or wish to record this yourself you will need to seek out the proper channels for doing so.

Whenever we minister at Nursing Homes always remember that not only Bella; but every resident whom we are called to serve has a story and abilities and value. One part of our ministry is not only to bless them; but to recognize and receive the blessings that they have to give!