Before I get started on Jeffrey’s jaunt into kindergarten, I came across a few things in my journal from back then that brought back all sorts of memories.
One day in particular that popped into my mind was the day when Gary’s sister Linda, prior to her death (On No, More Pain on the Way, But Also Relief!), decided to organize a prayer day for Jeffrey – without even telling Gary and I about it! Again, I was still very much a “baby Christian,” so when Linda called to inform me of what she had done, rather than seek the Lord myself to ask His will, my first thought was basically “oh – I better get busy!”
I started contacting people left and right, and gave them copies of a letter that Linda had drafted specifying her thoughts on the timing of this particular day. When the day finally arrived, we had people in approximately 9 states, as well as 3 churches in Korea, that stated their commitment to pray that day for our son.
Well the prayer day finally came … and went … and try as I might sadness filled me in that there had been no change of any sort in Jeffrey’s body. I felt the enemy goading me, stating, “I told you it wouldn’t work…”
We must never underestimate what God has planned, however. Because God – in His great mercy – had different plans. Isaiah 55:8 says: “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, says the Lord” (Amplified Bible). Let me give you a few examples:
First, during the week before the actual prayer day, we had a young man come by to clean the windows in our house. He had been over before, so we were just idly chatting when he “just happened” (I don’t believe in coincidences) to see a copy of Linda’s letter about the prayer day for Jeffrey sitting on the table. I explained what it was, and he asked if he could have a copy. It was evident that he was deeply moved. He then told us he was raised a Catholic, but had turned away from the church. I asked him if he knew Jesus personally, but I don’t think he understood what I was saying. However the Holy Spirit was moving, and he stated he would pray for Jeffrey on the specified date, and knew others who would pray also.
Then I received a call from a dear friend who informed me that their pastor prayed for Jeffrey by name all 3 services the Sunday morning of the prayer day, and that after the services a couple people came up to her to ask who we were. She was then able to share our testimony with them.
Also, because of our testimony, the pastor of our new church decided to listen to a cassette tape of when Gary gave his testimony at a previous church after losing our boys. He was so moved that he told Gary that perhaps one day he would like for him to speak and tell the congregation about it.
Finally, I learned a valuable lesson. As I continued to reflect and pray after that day, it came to my mind that agreeing with Linda to organize this day without consulting my Heavenly Father for wisdom was not the right thing to do. After all, had I not been praying for God to have complete rule and control over my life, instead of me? In running ahead of Him in this instance, I was basically telling him that since “I” thought this was a good plan, that He should fall in line and agree. OUCH!!!
I am so thankful for God’s patience with me. You see, even though at times we run ahead and try to put ourselves back in the driver’s seat of our lives, circumstances are never wasted with Him, and He can always turn things around. You see, He ended up using that day not to heal our little boy, but to heal and move hearts of others. I love the verse which says for the brokenhearted, He will:
… bestow on then a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendor.
Isaiah 61:3 (NIV). Amen!!!