Good News, gift-wrapped in GREAT NEWS. That was Your first “One-of-a-Kind Gift” to me today, Lord!
I came off the mountain this morning, back into cell phone range, for the first time in two days. I turned off Airplane Mode and received notification that I had a voicemail message from Highlands Regional Medical Center in Florida.
How odd, I thought. So I listened to the message. Last night, at about 9:00 PM, a staff member from the Emergency Room in that hospital called my cell phone. The message was that a female “friend” of mine (no name given) was in the ER at that very moment. My friend had asked the ER staff to call me. The staff member asked me to return the call, so she could connect me to my friend.
Nine o’clock PM last night. Twelve hours before I received the message. I immediately returned the call and was transferred to the ER. Only two staff members were there this morning (neither of whom was on duty last night).
I explained my dilemma. I was trying to reach my friend who had tried to reach me from the ER last night. “What’s your friend’s name?” I had no idea. They could not read me the list of last night’s ER patients (due to privacy laws). I completely understood. Still… I know it was no accident this message was left for me, Lord. So I made one more simple statement to the staff member. A statement that made a difference.
I said, “I believe my friend must have had you call so I could pray for her.”
Suddenly, the staff member gave me Good News: Everyone in the ER last night had been discharged to go home — meaning no hospitalizations were required. So, whoever my friend is who was there last night was at least able to go home.
Good News, indeed!
But the Good News was gift-wrapped in GREAT NEWS. GREAT NEWS You wanted me (and my friend) to know, without the shadow of a doubt.
In this emergency, my friend had reached out to me. I have no doubt it was for me to pray. So she was really reaching out to You, Lord… wasn’t she? You knew her every need — before, during and after the moment that call was made. And, although she couldn’t reach me, she didn’t have to… because You were right there for her!
“God is our Refuge and Strength, an Ever-present Help in trouble.” (Psalm 46:1)
And when she didn’t know how to pray — and I didn’t know she needed for me to pray — You were already praying… persistently, passionately, perfectly!
“In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. And He who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.” (Romans 8:26-27)
I don’t know if I will ever know who tried to reach me last night. But it is enough, Lord, to know that You know. And You were (and always are) more than enough.
“My God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:19)
GREAT NEWS, indeed!
Thank You, Lord, for giving me the opportunity to pray for my friend — whoever and wherever she is — ever since I received today’s One-of-a-Kind Gift. This Good News, gift-wrapped in GREAT NEWS. And thank You, Lord, for leading me this beautiful prayer. This prayer which today, by Your Grace, has her name on it:
“I pray that out of His glorious riches He may strengthen you with power through His Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your heart through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge — that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.” (Ephesians 3:16-19)