Monday, August 29, 2011
Thursday, August 25, 2011
“… pray without ceasing.” What does this really mean? Is it possible for us to pray without stopping? Do I pray brushing my teeth? Say a prayer of thanksgiving when I am eating chips & salsa? Praying is part of my job in the operating room. We pray for each patient that comes into theatre. I pray when we are searching for a vein to place a IV in a dehydrated child or for a infection to clear from a surgical wound. It is almost a constant conversation between me & God when we have a difficult case. “Lord, close the blood vessels that are too delicate for the surgeon to see.” We pray for our patients that have been ashamed or hurt because of outside appearances that they will feel loved during their stay on the ship. “May the healing start from the inside out for them.” That is not only our prayer, but also the reason why we are here.
Different things may trigger prayer… when the Emergency Medical Team alarm goes off- we know there is something going wrong with a patient. A status change on facebook may prompt me to pray for a friend. Lots of meetings, Bible studies, and chats lead to prayer among friends onboard. I glance up at my wall covered in pictures of loved ones. God places people on my heart to pray for… a dear friend grieving the loss of her father, missionary friends in other parts of Africa or at home, my sister in PNG, family members that are sick, and my church family in transition. I look at pictures of my supporters and I’m encouraged to know that the prayers are reciprocated.
With all this talk (or type) about prayer, I don’t want be perceived that I’m perfect in it… sometimes I feel “prayered” out. If there is such a thing? It’s a challenge for me every time I bow my head. I don’t want to have the same prayer for each hernia patient, but lately it has been… does God listen to the same mundane prayers? Of course He does, but my heart needs to be in it. I have seen miracles in answers to prayers here and afar; my faith is renewed each time. Sometimes, I feel like my prayers are a one-sided conversation and I wait for a response. I want to know the answers God has for my prayers… His timing is perfect and until then I will try to “Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18