When prayer is requested for those in need, all hearts open.
We reach out to Heaven, having faith that we are heard, that our prayers will be answered.
There is celebration and gratitude when healing takes place.... but when someone we love leaves this life despite all the open hearts and sincere prayers offered without ceasing... does it mean our prayers were not heard or answered?
Of course not.
It simply means that we cannot always know where the path of another will take them....or when.
I have come to believe that prayer is the vehicle for love to travel, to surround and to hold someone in need. Love is a force beyond our understanding. Love is God. So in our prayers we offer ourselves to be God's hands, God's embrace, God's protection, God's love... human to human.
We love despite the answer. We love when we have nothing more to offer. We love when life is restored and we love when life as we have come to cherish it, transitions into the wonder that comes after. We love and we trust.
So on those days when you ask for prayer for a specific outcome... my heart joins with yours in a request that asks only that we understand and continue to have faith, and to love even if the answer fills us with despair.
When prayer is answered and everyone breathes that sigh of relief saying, "God is good", remember that we have free will and choice. And if it appears that our prayers were not answered, God is still good !
As I have said so many times before, no one has ever prayed as hard as I did on May 1, 1998. I begged God to save my Shannon. I begged Shannon not to go. I have no idea how many prayers were offered along with mine but I'm sure I was not alone.
We can't lose faith when our hearts are broken...that is when it means the most. We must not blame love for the pain we suffer. We cannot give up on prayer. We simply trust that life is forever and prayer gives us a place to lay when we can no longer stand.
Prayers are always answered. Love is always and forever abundant. Death will come and we won't always understand but prayers are never wasted. Prayers wrap us in love and keep us safe until we are able to stand again.