“Pray with fire.” That was the only thing I could think to say. Pray with fire.
I’m not sure how I coined the phrase but the only thing that came to mind was the baptism of the Holy Spirit on the disciples.
No one likes to hear the word cancer. We don’t want to hear it for our friends and we certainly never want to hear it in terms of our loved ones. But my husband and I sat in the doctor’s office, numbed by the word. If that wasn’t enough, drop in “aggressive” and you can’t catch your breath.
The cancer monster has struck my prince. Tim is my prince. There’s a story behind that, but simply knowing he is my prince probably speaks volumes. He is, literally, a gift from God. I believe that because he came to me when I wasn’t looking. We’d both been through a divorce. Both had two sons, 15 months apart. We became friends first and then it morphed into a relationship that took away all the hurt and loss we’d experienced in a previous marriage. Thirty-three years we’ve been together. Thirty-three years.
Raising four sons comes with trials, but we managed them and our marriage? Well, it’s still strong. There was never a question of our gratitude to God, for we understood our coming together was truly a God thing. We’ve never doubted God’s presence in our relationship, even when things were tough.
So when the doctor said cancer, Tim and I were hit with a stick. . . a really big, thick one.
It’s easy to tell others that we have faith. Most of us can spit those words out with some amount of confidence, but when God asks us to live it, the going gets hard. Really hard.
What do you do? This disease doesn’t give you the option to wish it away, so we look above and begin to live what we claim to have – our faith. It forces us to reassess the degree of faith we have.
Once we got our head around the reality, we put a plan together, had a heart to heart talk, then bumped fists. Just like Jehoshaphat, we go to the people and ask them to pray. Then we believe that God has already fought the battle for us. It’s up to us to have great faith and believe that God has already done what He promised, so we march ahead of the troops, singing and dancing, praising God for the battle is already won.
My niece reminded me of some advice I’d given her when she struggled. Funny how God brings those things back around to us. She said, “You told me there are mountains and valleys in our faith...in our lives. We can’t always be on the mountain but when we are in the valley, it’s not a bad place. You lay down in the meadow and look up. But looking up is not all there is. It’s when you roll your head to one side and see that God isn’t up, rather He’s laying right next to you. And He’ll lay next to you until you feel like you can stand. Then He’ll help you to stand and not let you fall.” I didn’t know I had such wisdom (I’m teasing). When all is said and done, the analogy is spot on. God is not just in heaven. He’s laying in the meadow next to us, waiting for us to stand. Then He refuses to let us fall. God is the founder of great faith, because he already knows He’s acted on the need.
My phone dinged and it was a text from our minister. “Is there anything I can do for you?”
“Yes, as a matter of fact there is.”
“What is it?”
“Pray with fire. Just pray with the fire of the Holy Spirit.”
“I can do that.”
So this is not a writing post. It’s a plea, because I need to know that my friends are praying with fire for my prince. Praying for healing. Praying for God’s will, and for understanding when I don’t. Do this for us. Walk your faith. Believe with deep belief, and then pray with fire. Pray with the fire of the Holy Spirit.
Photos courtesy of pixabay.com & DanaTentis
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