Saturday, October 31, 2009
When Michael Prays
I have always been amazed at how much faith a child can display. It seems that no matter how discouraging the circumstances are, a child can see the silver lining in the darkest cloud.
A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about my grandson, Gabe, and his tremendous dedication to God. He has always had such a devotion to the things of God and never seems to tire of His Word. Recently, I have noticed my youngest grandson, Michael, displaying his faith in a different manner. Quite simply, Mikey prays---and he prays with complete trust and faith in his God. When I think of where God has brought Michael from, I am both humbled and awed by Mikey's deep relationship with God.
When Mikey was born, it was apparent from the beginning that he would have a difficult start in life. He cried continuously---not like a colicky baby cries, but like a child who is in agony. Nothing we did eased his discomfort. It was so sad. Then, as if by magic, he stopped crying and became almost totally unresponsive to any of us, his family. He did not laugh, he did not smile, he did not coo. He would lay in his mother's arms with no expression on his beautiful little face. We prayed and cried and sought the Lord for healing. When, at the age of three months, he smiled for the first time, we were ecstatic. From that point on, Mikey smiled almost continuously. Everything we did, every word we spoke, Mikey would smile and coo at us while his eyes lit up with joy. He became affectionate and loving, holding up his little arms for us to pick him up---and we did.
Mikey continued with his laughter and his smiles almost two years. While his smile and his little personality were now a constant, we encountered another problem---Mikey could not talk. He made no attempts to speak. He did not make any sound that could be interpreted as an attempt to talk to us. We would ask him questions and he would just look at us with a big smile and continue with whatever he was doing. How I wanted to hear his little baby voice and to have sweet toddler conversations with him. I wanted to hear him say my name and I wanted to hear him say "Mama".
One Sunday morning after church, we were all together at my parent's home. Mikey was seated on the floor, playing with his toys. I watched him closely and, quite suddenly, felt in my spirit that my father should lay hands on him and pray for his healing. I gathered him in my arms and carried him into the living room. I remember the feel of his little arms around my neck and the way he snuggled into my embrace. I explained to my father what I had felt in my spirit. He took Mikey in those big, strong arms of his and I will never forget his prayer: "Lord, we just ask that you would heal Michael today. Loosen his tongue and let him speak, in Jesus' name. Amen." Such a simple prayer but I felt the presence of our healing Saviour that day. That was Sunday afternoon. By Thursday, Mikey began saying little words--somewhat hesitantly, but he tried. By the next weekend Mikey was speaking in full sentences and has been ever since. Oh, how my heart soared. The first time he looked at me and said, "Gigi", I thought I would faint from the sheer joy of the occasion.
When I think of these things, I am not really surprised that Mikey's relationship with God would be based upon prayer---a part of the relationship that uses his voice. How great is our God!
Our family has greatly benefited from Mikey's prayers. Most recently, He prayed for my father. Daddy had been having severe arthritic pain in his knees. Sometimes the pain has prevented him from doing some of the things he normally loves to do. So, while we were all visiting, my father said to Mikey, "Mikey, come here. I need you to pray for my knees and ask the Lord to take away the pain." My lovely little Mikey laid his small hands on my father's knees. In earnest faith he said, "Lord, we just give you thanks and praise for this day and for your many blessings. Lord, we just ask that you would heal Pa's knees and make them better. In Jesus name, amen." He looked up at my father, smiled that beautiful smile, informed my father that he would be alright, then went back to his toys. His faith was so simple, so profound, that my father and I just looked at each other and grinned. We know how far Mikey has come.
Children are such wonderful little creatures. They are such a blessing and bring us to an understanding of what is really important in life. Children are the only assurance we have that our ideas, our morals, our sincerest beliefs, will move forward into the next generation. Children make the world a wonderful place.
I will long remember a day in October when a little boy, who couldn't speak for so long, prayed a prayer of faith and left his mark upon my heart. I will remember the sound of his childish voice and cherish his childish faith. I will recall the day when God came near and brushed the heart of man. It was the day when Michael prayed.