Have you ever wondered whether or not God actually answered your prayers or it was just pure coincidence? Well, I lived my whole life that way…questioning the validity of the things that occurred in my life and whether or not I put the outcome in the hands of God or the universe (and yes, I do believe the 2 are different; I’m a different kind of Christian).
When my father died I deemed myself Agnostic. I didn’t believe in ANYTHING even though I had grown up in the Baptist church for 18 years of my life. It was at 16 when he took my dad that I had my final, “He can’t possibly be real” thought and was mentally done with the idea of prayer and everything that comes with it. I spent the next 6 or so years with no God and entirely engulfed in the world and a world of sin. Thankfully He kept me when I didn’t want to be kept.
The years 2011-2013 were the best spiritual years of my life. I had rededicated my life back to Christ…found a church that truly had my best interest at heart and wanted to help me grow. My gifts of dreaming, prophecy and intercessory prayer returned. I got out of the homosexual lifestyle I was living (and that was totally God’s doing, not mine). I began to read my word, pray and meditate daily. I was in a place you couldn’t tell me anything about my God. I had finally reached that “peace that surpasses all understanding” point of my life, and I was happy. Still a bit heartbroken, but happy nonetheless.
Anyway, when my dad died so abruptly, my last prayer was that I would KNOW when my mom was going to die. That I would have warning…boy do you have to watch what you pray for. In November of 2013, I moved back home from Jersey because the Lord told me I had to go. I packed all my bags and left with very little consideration. That’s one of many times I obeyed God’s command without a second thought. I was confirmed when as I was on the highway my mom text me and asked me would I come home. She hated to ask me, but she was getting sicker and didn’t know why. Two months later she would be diagnosed with ALS. He made sure I was there for the diagnosis, just her and I. Here was my warning flourishing. The prayer I prayed in Summer of 2006 coming to life in Winter 2014.
In her last few months, my prayer was simple. I knew for a fact my mother was going to die. My only prayer was that she would not go without me present to hold her hand as she went “gentle into that good night”. I feared that late night call and having to drive myself home in the middle of the night having already missed her passing or getting to see her face for the last time. I live 2 hours away, and though I came home nearly every weekend I always figured I wouldn’t make it.
The weekend I missed, I felt terrible. She was always waiting for me to come home. I text her and told her I was sorry, but that I would be there the NEXT weekend…but in my spirit I felt so terrible for some reason. It was a guilt that was so heavy I went to bed Sunday night and dreamt that friends came to my door in the middle of the night to tell me that my mom had passed away and if I needed a ride home. In this dream, I fell to the floor after the news and cried saying, “I should have gone home” repeatedly. Monday morning I woke up and went to work as normal…but I felt a heaviness so strong that I left in the middle of the day to go home and see my mom. Something didn’t feel right. I missed her like crazy and needed to see her face so bad. I wondered again, “was God speaking to me in my dreams…letting me know it was time?” I got home to her and hugged and kissed her. For the first time, she didn’t smile the way she usually does when I walk in the room. She was panting so hard trying to breathe that she couldn’t muster her best one. Once the nurses got her breathing a little better I asked them to leave the room so we could have some privacy. Now I normally don’t do that. I will talk in front of them; nor do I pour my heart and soul out to my mom knowing it will make her cry, but that day I felt the need to let it all out. I cried to her…told her how much I loved her and how unfair this was…that I didn’t know what I’d do if I lost her or how I would make it. That I was sorry for anything I done and she assured me in her way that she didn’t feel any ill toward me and that she loved me. She agreed with me that it’s not fair. I asked her did she think it was time for her to go. Normally she would say no. Her relationship with God was strong. This time she shrugged her shoulders in uncertainty. It was then that I knew…she was leaving me. I made her promise me that she wouldn’t leave without me by her side…her last words to me…”I’ll try”.
I left about 1am to return to my home 2 hours away. I made it through Tuesday, but Wednesday during work, I got that call that I needed to make it home right away. I rushed home and on the phone, the other guardian told me I may not make it in time. I told them to “keep her breathing until I get there”, no matter what they had to do…but she was slipping away and non-responsive. When I arrived, she began to come to again. Happy to see me, she smiled. I asked her was she dying and she said yes. She wanted to C-pap removed from her face, but I asked her, did she want to see my brothers and sister first. I rushed them there to see her one last time before we made any other moves, as my mom signed a DNR. She wanted no drastic measures taken. The next day we got her discharged and taken home. We could see her slipping away again. It was so surreal literally watching someone go into the light. I now know that’s a real thing. I’ve seen it with my own eyes. We got her home and in bed, where she wanted to die. The hospice nurse gave her comfort medicine and no sooner than she left and removed the breathing tube, she slipped away in as I held her hand. I watched her take her last breaths and turn clammy, pale and cold. I held her the whole time as I prayed I would be able to. It’s something I will never forget. I grateful, but it still is a hard thing to have to remember.
God didn’t have to give me that dream to go home and see her and spend those last lucid moments with her…to cry and tell her my true feelings one last time, to express my love and gratitude and appreciation for our friendship and support of one another. But it’s still very hard to take in. He didn’t have to make sure she held on for me. He didn’t have to give me the initial warning and bless me to come home and take care of her for a period of time and spend those precious moments with her. I’m eternally grateful for the Lord answering my prayers, and it is because of THIS prayer, that I know my God is real. It took me time to accept and believe that, but I will never question his power and the mercy and grace he has bestowed upon me. Thank you Jesus for being there and giving me the vision and the will to listen. I thank you for the holy spirit’s power. God saw me through, and I just know he will continue to bring me up and help me to deal with heartbreak and help me to live in a world that my mom doesn’t. I know he will.