I have been processing the events of last Thursday night. How do I put into words the amazing and wonderful event that occurred in a small upstairs room at one of the buildings on my church campus at Fellowship this week?
Last Sunday morning, following worship service, David and I visited the Prayer Room, for obvious reasons. The Prayer Room is a private room designated for those who feel the need for prayer following a worship service. The room is quiet with lamps and secluded sections with comfortable chairs. Most importantly, members of our elder board and their spouses are also there, waiting.
Newly diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer to my brain, lungs, liver, possible pancreas, and who knows where else, and we were reeling. We are not geniuses, but we recognize when we NEED HELP. And we are far from too proud. We've visited that Prayer Room a couple of other times, and it's never fun. Emotional and serious and tearful, but such is life at times. To hide from these events is foolish and even selfish.
We met with Kent and his wife, Terry, who listened intently and were quick to comfort and hold us and pray fervently. Their prayers were comforting and strengthening and we suddenly did not feel quite so alone. They immediately promised to make plans to get with the rest of the Elders to pray with us as a group.
The following day, Kent contacted David and said they wanted us to come to church some evening that week for a time of prayer and anointing with oil. We, of course, were more than willing. In fact, many of these same elders had done just that during my first cancer diagnosis in 2010. We knew what a special and strengthening time it would be. Thursday night it was.
And to make it even more special, many members of our community group also attended. These are people that we meet with regularly for Bible study and fellowship, and who keep a large church body such as Fellowship from seeming quite so large. We know each other better than most and love each other, warts and all. They were there to support and comfort, and that they did!!
So, we met with the elders at 7:00 on Thursday evening this past week. We were greeted and seated comfortably in two seats. Everyone was introduced, our community group members in attendance were also seated, and I, with the help of David, explained my current situation...and the praying began.
I will not go into detail, other than to say these are obviously Godly men who know how to speak through the Spirit. They know that the Spirit intercedes in our "groaning", as it says in Romans. We may not know what to say, but the Spirit's got it covered (thank God!). I count on this daily - as my words are usually pretty pathetic, and rambling, and sometimes confused.
Their words, however, were NOT pathetic. They felt golden and divine and they put things into words that I only dream of doing. We were ministered to in amazing ways. Not to be overly dramatic, but I felt the Spirit of God hovering over and around all of us.
One at a time, each elder knelt before us and laid his hands on us and anointed our foreheads with fragrant oil (James 5:14, etc.), before following with the most comforting and sincere prayers...some so quiet only David and I could hear. These men were there for US, and no one else.
I went through numerous tissues, of course, as did David. But somewhere in there, that peace came. That peace that transcends all understanding...it came. Sweet relief!...to feel that unbelievable peace in my mind and my heart.
I know this is the battle for my LIFE, for my BODY - but it is also a battle for my MIND. I have heard the voices in there - those voices from the evil one. Voices that bring doubt and fear and anger and resentment and, perhaps, worst of all, apathy.
I left feeling hopeful and buoyed and loved unconditionally. Every single one of these men made the point to tell us what a BLESSING it was for THEM to be allowed to pray for us. Needless to say, it was mutual. I know their prayer will continue and that I have the BEST PRAYER WARRIORS on my side. Not just these wonderful men, but so many, many of you. You, who are standing in the gap, when my words don't come or I am too beat to do much else. I praise God for you all.
It was a blessing walking out of that building with my community group brothers and sisters by my side. With humor and promises and love, we all returned to our cars with relief and thankfulness, feeling ready to take on whatever may come...and not alone.