Thursday, July 3, 2008

When I Can't Pray for Myself

I had lunch with Karen last week. We've been talking about meeting since Landry was born, and we made time to get together since Karen was slated to return to the workforce this week. I had a lovely time visiting and cultivating our new relationship. We talked about Landry and how she's growing. We talked about Karen's sister Kim who recently lost her second baby, Lucy. We talked about Zachary, and in that portion of the conversation, Karen asked how I was doing.

I told her I was doing surprisingly well, and I am most days. What I've found is that the busier I stay, the easier my days are. When I slow down, when I stop, the lump returns to my throat, the tears start to flow. It's much more comfortable to avoid the grief, and so I stay busy.

I know I need to slow down. I know I need to stay settled in this sorrowful place and let God do all that He will, but I'm tired of being so blue. Instead of sitting still, I spend all my time running in an effort to avoid the pain. Just when I think I've outrun it, Gracie brings home a prayer journal from VBS where on page one she asked that God would give her (meaning us) a baby. If that doesn't make for a setback, I don't know what does.

The journal incident was so overwhelming that I lost it for a little while. We're in the midst of all sorts of decisions for our family, and to know just how much our little one wants a sibling adds to my feeling of guilt and disappointment. I tried praying more than "Thy will be done" and couldn't, so that's what I prayed -- I told the Lord that I couldn't pray, that I didn't even know how to pray for myself anymore with regards to our family growth. And that's where I left it.

On Monday, I had an appointment to see my endocrinologist. I'd had a very vivid dream the night before about a friend, so during the drive, I pulled out my phone to call and tell her about it. I turned my phone on to see I'd missed a call and had a voicemail.

The message was from my doctor's phone nurse. In the voicemail, she clarified that she was calling me on Sunday from her personal cell phone. She apologized for her call being strange, but said she felt compelled. She said that morning as her pastor was preaching, he began talking about babies and God's plan. She explained as she sat there that morning, I came to her mind, and so did my phone number. She scribbled my number on her bulletin and called me as soon as she could. She just had to let me know that she was praying for me.

Again, this nurse is my doctor's phone nurse. Her job is to take calls from patients, pharmacies, and physicians, and all day long, she's either taking numbers or dialing numbers -- she's inundated with digits. I've only talked to her a handful of times during the course of the relationship with my doctor, so there's no need for her to know my number by heart. Moreover, she was not familiar with our story of loss. She just felt impressed to pray for me, and so she was and she called to let me know.

I know people who know me, people who love me, continue to pray for me. From time to time, someone will call or send a note to let me know I'm still on their mind, and it blesses me every single time. But the experience of having this woman call (a woman who really doesn't know me, who doesn't know a thing about Zachary), it stunned me. I couldn't hold back the tears.

For me and my number to come to a stranger's mind in the midst of a Sunday sermon was like the Lord letting me know that He understood where I was. He heard me when I said I couldn't even pray for myself, and He cared so much that He brought about someone to pray for me. His faithfulness is amazing.

"The Lord hears his people when they call to him for help.
He rescues them from all their troubles."
-- Psalm 34:17

"I waited patiently for the Lord to help me,
and he turned to me and heard my cry."
== Psalm 40:1

"Great is his faithfulness;
his mercies begin afresh each morning."
-- Lamentations 3:40


  • DeDe

    Amanda, my heart aches so deep for you and I do still pray for you and this situation. I'm so glad that you "heard" from God in such an unique way that you knew it was Him. Thank you Lord that You still give Amanda hope while she waits on your perfect timing.

  • taralynn819

    I sensed the desire to pray while reading this post. I've been needing that desire.

  • Christy

    That much be such a comfort for you. To know he hears your prayers even when you no longer know how to pray.

  • Happy Mommy

    Oh Honey, God knows, he knows your heart, he knows your baby! I am going to pray for you right now, pray for you to have peace more than anything. While I was praying for God to change my husband's heart about a vasectomy reversal, I also prayed for peace either way. Although we have had the reversal, I am still not pregnant, so I pray for peace daily, God knows my heart. Much Love,
    Happy Mommy

  • Randi

    That is so God. I know it's a sad and hard post but in the midst of that, WOW!! God adores you and sent someone else to confirm that He hears your voice and knows the desires of your heart. It's things like that that confirm to me, once again, that God is SO real and loves us. He's sending you hope. I can't wait to see the plans He has for you, plans to prosper you.

  • Leslie

    Amanda, I love to hear about those little 'miracles' that God does in our every day lives. Thank you for sharing! I will be praying for you and the family.


  • Karen

    He is so amazing and so are you.

    I know it is not easy because I too struggle with the guilt of my body, let's call it, not being too friendly towards pregnancy. I know it is not God's will for me or you to live in guilt, especially when it's not your fault. You don't deserve the heartache you have been thru but God is using it for his mighty purpose.
    Always praying for you - Karen

  • Amy

    Praying for you... I know that this was written days ago, but I am praying for you tonight.

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