Because God WILL answer.
My friend and I prayed together the last evening in January. I prayed for her, that she would know and love God better. "That's it. That's what I want more than anything else in the world," she confessed. Scary prayer...knowledge of and intimacy with God isn't something gleaned from daisy fields. And God isn't in the business of raising frail, delicate daughters. No, He's bringing up warrior princesses.
Three months after that prayer, my friend was diagnosed with a serious life-threatening illness. Out of the blue. Totally unexpected. One day, she was at work, doing her normal routine - the next, racing down the highway to the isolation of a cancer ward in a hospital two hours away.
Then a long, dark, horrible, terrifying month.
My friend is home now, recovering from her first round of treatments. Two weeks ago, she was gray and weak and so very soul-weary. Today, two weeks post-chemo, she is finally feeling alive and joyful and is pink and glowing. Seeing her bright smile this morning was like having the sun come up inside my heart...I thought I would absolutely burst with delight!
My friend has truly walked through the valley of the shadow of death, and that shadow still hovers over her today. But her face shines like Glory - because she has stood close to God, has seen His love and faithfulness, has known Him more intimately than perhaps I ever will.
* * * * *
Today, my friend asked me how I felt about my new job at Wal-Mart. "I have very mixed feelings about it," I admitted. "I enjoy the work and meeting new people...but I truly hate being away from home and, physically, I'm not quite adjusted to the demands of this new routine. I am constantly wondering, Just what is really going on here?"
My friend laughed. (Can anything be more beautiful than the laughter of a friend that you recently feared was lost to you forever?!) "God is answering our prayers, Camille!"
Several months ago, my friend had asked what she could pray for me. I answered, "I feel like I live in a very small world - I have so few opportunities to share the Gospel with others. I really wish God would bring me in contact with other people who are not already in church, people who don't know Christ..."
In a round-a-bout way that was so subtle, so gradual, so convoluted that I couldn't possibly connect the dots, God did exactly that. Is that what this job is all about? Perhaps this job is not a burden, but is instead an opportunity to share Christ. Wow.
* * * * *
I am so thankful I serve a God who hears my prayers and answers them - in ways I can't even begin to anticipate or imagine.
And I'm so thankful that tomorrow, by God's great mercy, I get to stand alongside my beautiful, radiant, smiling sister as we worship Him together.