Volume 37, No. 6
Praying for Deliverance -
Years ago, my dear friend Joe Haag, who many of you know, said to our Sunday School class about his wife Jean Ann: “There comes a time when you stop praying for healing, and you start praying for deliverance.” His wife, who had suffered for years from ovarian cancer, had reached the end of her life’s journey, and all that was left to pray for was deliverance.
I had an incredible privilege this last week to visit with Parker Palmer, my soul’s patron saint. Long story short, a friend of a friend connected us, and he agreed to spend some time with me over Zoom. We spoke for an hour and a half, and I soaked up every ounce of wisdom he offered me. At the end, I asked him how I could honor his time, expecting him to ask for payment of something of the like. Instead, he said, “Would you please pray for my dying sister... that she would have an easy deliverance?”
In the book of Ecclesiastes, the writer says there is a season for everything, and death is included. We are not always accustomed to praying for deliverance, but sometimes it’s all that’s left, and we hope that the passing from this life to the next is an easy one.
I've never forgotten Joe’s wisdom, and I’m mindful that deliverance is a hard prayer to pray. If you’ve had to pray that prayer for someone, I hold you close today, along with Parker’s sister, Sharon. It’s not an easy place to be, but deliverance is just that - deliverance. It’s deliverance from and deliverance to. Deliverance from pain and death; deliverance to joy and rest.
It doesn’t make it easy on those of us left behind, but it offers us comfort. As we prepare for Easter, remember that death doesn’t have the last word, and our prayers for deliverance, hard as they be, are faithful and true.
My prayers for you, dear Royal Lane, continue...