Prayer Moves the Hand of God
It was Christmas, 2003…and my mother was suffering terribly. She was 85. I had come down to Florida to spend this special Day with her to celebrate the birth of Christ Jesus our Lord, but the excruciating pain in her facial nerves was so overwhelming…my heart was broken for her. She was afflicted with Trigeminal Neuralgia…a condition that the medical profession describes as “the most intense pain known that a human being can experience.” Doctors have no idea how to treat it…there are something like 32 variations of this condition, and it cannot be accurately diagnosed as to which one it is. Pain medications do not touch it; oftentimes, it drives a person to suicide for relief.
I continued in intense prayer for my mother: “Lord, please deliver her from this pain; take the pain from her, and place it on me…let me suffer it on her behalf,” I often pleaded. Not that I thought I could endure it any better than she could; I just couldn’t bear to see her suffer so intensely. I came down to Florida again in February 2004 to take her to a renowned pain clinic, and to see still another neurologist. All to no avail.
One day, sometime in March, out of the clear blue, the Lord startled me with these words, “I want you to move to Florida.” [That is a literal quote, as are the others in this testimony; it was not an audible voice, but a voice speaking within me that was just as clear as if it were audible!] I responded…very much taken aback, “Well…OK, Lord; I will do that.” The thought had never before entered my mind; I lived and worked on Long Island [NY]; the church I loved was in Brooklyn [Brooklyn Tabernacle], where I would always attend the Tuesday night prayer meeting; my most treasured Earthly possession was a log cabin I owned in the mountains of Upstate New York, where I would spend many weekends alone with the Lord; all my friends and acquaintances were in New York, where I have lived all my life. The Lord spoke to me twice again during this period of time…clearly directing me, “I want you to sell the Cabin” [read testimony on this website entitled “Divine Direction,” where I recount how the Lord told me by His Own voice who I was to sell it to, and at what price]; and clearly stating what He intended to do in answer to my prayers for my mother, “I am going to raise up your mother.” I thought He was going to deliver her from her Trigeminal Neuralgia; little did I know that He was going to raise her up off her death-bed!
The purpose of my testimony at this point is to illustrate how the Spirit of God worked in me both the desire to obey my Father’s will, and the power to do His will, in two very major area’s of my life: concerning my most prized Earthly possession, and, where I was to live. He enabled me, by the power of His enabling grace, to respond to His leading and prompting with an unquestioning child-like obedience [read Gen 22:2-12] …and so all the glory belongs to Him. Had I responded in the power of my flesh, I never would have chosen to do the things He asked…and would have missed all the incredible blessings He had in store for me through my obedience.
May 7th I was back at my mother’s Condo in Florida, to locate a place nearby to rent for my relocation there. I spent all that next day Saturday looking…and found nothing suitable. Weary from my efforts, as I crossed the Blue Heron bridge back to Singer Island where my mother lived, I was prompted by the Spirit of God, “Look to the left.” I did…and was just passing a short dead-end street at the end of which was a sign: FOR RENT. There was a small cottage available on that street, and a phone number to contact. I made arrangements to meet the owner there early that evening, and she walked me through the cottage. It was perfect; only 4 minutes from my mother’s condo; only $800 monthly. She told me it was listed to appear in tomorrow morning’s Sunday newspaper, and would be gone in a heartbeat. I took it on the spot!
I was living in a rental unit on Long Island at the time, and in 10 days I packed everything I owned that could fit into a 15 passenger van void of seats [donated everything else], and arrived at my rental cottage in Florida on May 20th. Eleven days later, on Memorial Day, I was with my mother when she collapsed in utter delirium, mournfully declaring, “I am finished!” I called ER to get her to the hospital.
Her blood pressure was 220; her sodium level was dangerously low…at a point where she could easily have died. Had she not arrived at the Hospital Emergency Room when she did for treatment, she would have died. Five days later, June 5th, my mother lay on her Hospital bed…four sets of intravenous tubes, non-ambulatory, incontinent, in deep dementia. She had lost 20% of her bodily weight…now just 92 pounds, and hadn’t eaten anything in a week. All of the doctors and nurses told us, “She is finished; just let her go.” That evening Vince, my new brother in the Lord from Upstate New York…the one whom the Lord had told me concerning my log cabin, “Sell it to Vince”… called me and could hardly contain himself! He was praying for my mother with the pastor of his church, and suddenly, he said, he heard this voice within him…but it wasn’t audible…saying, “I am going to raise her up.” Being a new Christian, he was really excited, but did not know what was taking place. “Whoa Vince,” I explained, “You were really blessed; that was the Spirit of God speaking to you and revealing what He was going to do concerning my mother!” Through Vince, that was the second time the Lord told me He was going to raise up my mother.
I continued to hold on to what the Lord had told me, sharing it only with my sister. We spent our days, from morning to night, at the hospital. Meanwhile, the Lord was leading and guiding me by His Spirit. A doctor…the neurologist we had last seen… pulled me aside and told me, “Don’t let them perform any invasive tests on your mother; she has suffered enough already. If they were to find that she has cancer, would you really, at this point, put her through Chemo therapy?” A nurse pulled me aside and advised, “Don’t let them put your mother on all kinds of medications. They did that to my father, and I really regretted it; we could never determine what was actually going on with him and what was just negative reactions from the various drugs.” I took these as warnings directly from the Spirit, and the Hospital was not at all happy with me as I stopped every “recommended” invasive test, and would not allow them to add additional medications to her treatment. When the Gastroenterologist asked that I allow her to view my mother’s stomach and esophagus with a scope…that it was not a very invasive procedure…the Spirit gave me permission to do so. The doctor found that my mother had severe ulcers in both her stomach and esophagus… which was a really important and necessary discovery…and immediately put her on intravenous antibiotics to treat it. Finally…upon the Spirit’s leading I insisted the Hospital put my mother on intravenous feeding, reasoning with them that her body had no nutrients to draw on for strength and healing [she hadn’t eaten for weeks at this point]. They reluctantly agreed, reminding me once again, “She is finished; just let her go.” They did not know that I was holding on to what the Lord had twice already told me: “I am going to raise up your mother.” On June 17th I agreed to her transfer to Hospice…on the condition that Hospice would continue with the intravenous feeding.
The Hospice Administrator asked me…three times over the next two days…to please pick out a funeral home. I ignored his requests. Tuesday morning, June 22nd… somewhere around 10 AM…I was laying back in a recliner near my mother’s bed, just thinking about the Lord. My mother was laid out on her Hospice bed totally out of it…intravenous feeding tube, non-ambulatory, incontinent, in deep dementia. Suddenly, out of the clear blue, the voice of the Lord startled me, “I am going to raise up your mother…and just so you know, I am going to show you a few things” That is a quote. The Lord’s voice was not audible, but was as clear inside me as if two friends were speaking together face to face!
From that point on, just as the Lord promised, He began “showing me a few things”… my mother began making remarkable and continual progress! She started walking with a walker. She began eating meals at the Hospice cafeteria; I told them they could now discontinue the intravenous feeding. After a few weeks, she was released from the Hospice facility to Hospice care at home. On August 31st, the Lord told me, “No more diapers;” He had restored her continence! No one had ever heard of an incontinent person’s continence being restored! We began going on walks without the walker; no more walker! On November 17th, she was released from the Hospice program; she no longer qualified!
Two weeks after my mother’s release, the Hospice doctor who had cared for her during the past four months in the program, called and asked if he could come and visit her. I agreed. I wondered why he wanted to examine her…and then I knew, as he began his dementia test. I had told him that the Lord had reversed her dementia, and I knew he didn’t believe that. He began telling her his test short story having various details and facts. When the story is finished, he would then ask the patient questions concerning the details and facts in the story. A person with dementia is not able to remember those details and facts…but my mother was answering all of his questions with good accuracy…as a normal person would! By the time Doctor Lerner was finished, he was in a daze! He was bewildered; glassy-eyed! He knew that Hospice medications had not brought her back from her death-bed…that they are administered for comfort, not for healing! He knew as a doctor that no one had ever heard of dementia being reversed! As he was walking out the front door, still dazed and glassy-eyed, he turned to me in bewilderment, “I don’t know what you are doing… but whatever it is, keep on doing it.” That is a literal quote. I told him, once again, that the Lord had raised her up in answer to prayer. He still didn’t want to believe that… but he had no answer for what he had just witnessed! Hallelujah!
By year end, my mother and I were going on overnight sightseeing trips. I told the Lord that I would like to go back with her to that Hospice cafeteria for lunch one day…when all the nurses and staff that had seen and known her would be there. I kept asking, and waiting…until one late morning the Lord said, “Go to Hospice cafeteria.” When we walked into that cafeteria, everyone that I had hoped would be there was there! They saw my mother, and were wide-eyed in amazement, fawning over her, as though they were seeing the walking dead! They treated her like a celebrity, talking excitedly with her! They knew that what they were witnessing just does not happen with a former Hospice patient! After we left, and my mother wondered why they paid so much attention to her, I realized that she never really knew the magnitude of what the Lord had done…that she was a walking miracle, a trophy of the Lord, a living witness to His Great Name and Mighty Power! Hallelujah!
I don’t know whether in the depths of your heart you really believe there is a God in Heaven or not, but this I do know…my mother was dead, and now she is alive! [Read John 9:1-38] I proclaim to you Christ Jesus…the One Who existed from the beginning, from Eternity Past, Whom I have heard with the ears of my own inner being, and have seen with my own spiritual eyes. I have gazed upon Him and have spiritually touched Him with my own hands. He is the Word of Life. His Life is continually being revealed to me; I have seen it and testify to it, and I proclaim to you that He is the One Who is Eternal Life. He always existed with the Father, and is now continually being manifested afresh and anew to me. I proclaim to you what I have personally seen and heard in the depths of my soul, so that you also may enjoy this same fellowship together with us. The fellowship I continually enjoy is with the Father and with His Son, Christ Jesus. I am writing these things so that you also may fully share together with me in this fullness of joy. [1 John 1:1-4]. It is our birth-right as a child of the Most High God!