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On the Journey
By Rick Hamlin

Amazing Answered Prayers

“All the prayers helped,” says my friend Peggy Frezon. “I could feel everybody praying for us.”

And boy, were we ever.

In late January Peggy’s husband, Mike, went into the hospital with two blood clots in his lungs and Peggy asked for prayers. We prayed, of course, but the news only got worse. He had internal bleeding, a ruptured bowel, surgery.

I’m sure I was not the only one who followed Peggy’s updates with dismay. How much more could a guy take? And what about Peggy? Mike was in the hospital 32 days. He had 17 CT scans, was given 11 units of blood and was on a respirator for eight days.

I called Peggy recently to see how she managed. “I can never sleep by myself in the best of times,” she said. “The first few nights I came home from the hospital and sat in the chair in the living room with all the lights on, emailing friends, asking for prayers. I was terrified.” Then she made a turn she feels could only have happened with the help of all those prayers. “I’d come home from the hospital at night,” she told me, “and fall fast asleep.”

She found prayer support at the hospital too. “One day, when Mike had gone for tests, I was sitting in his room, crying. The housekeeping lady came in, singing hymns to herself. She ended up singing one of my favorites, ‘'Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus,’ with me. Just when I needed it.”

Mike would add his own prayers. “When he was lying in bed and getting down, he’d burst out with the Lord’s Prayer or the Apostles' Creed,” Peggy says. “ And when he couldn’t speak, he spelled in my hand, ‘Pray.’”

He’s been home now for two months, recovering. He and Peggy take their dogs, Kelly and Ike, on long walks as Mike works on getting his strength back. He hasn’t returned to work yet, but he’s looking forward to it. “Maybe just a couple of days a week,” says Peggy.

But on visits back to his doctors he’s discovered just how miraculous it is that he’s alive. As his surgeon recently told him, “Mike, you had an 80 or 90 percent chance of dying.”

When you go through a trial like this, it’s bound to test your faith. But what I heard from Peggy and Mike was a deepened appreciation for life. “I’m just glad he’s home,” Peggy said. “He sits in the living, close to my office, and even though it’s a distraction, it’s a good distraction. I wouldn’t want it to be any other way.”

Here’s a shout-out to all you who have prayed for Peggy and Mike. Peggy was a winner of the Writers Workshop Contest and her fellow writers were all pulling for her and Mike. If you’ve read any of her stories or follow her on Facebook, you know she’s a big dog lover. Thanks, Kelly and Ike, for taking care of Peggy. You, too, are God’s emissaries.

I think of what Jesus said to the blind man when he asked to be healed: “Your faith has made you well” (Luke 18:42). Peggy’s prayers, Mike’s, their friends’, their church’s, their children’s and all our prayers are working together and Mike is becoming well. Very well indeed. Keep it up and keep those prayers coming. 

Rick Hamlin is the executive editor of Guideposts magazine and the author of 10 Prayers You Can't Live Without. To learn more about the book and explore your own prayer journey, watch this video.