A few weeks ago in our weekly staff meeting, our boss walked over to one of our staff members. He took a red marker and drew a line on Kelley’s arm. He said, “The artery is cut. What are you going to do.” I was sitting closest. I immediately put the palm of my hand on the red line. I put pressure on it. I kept that hand on his arm while someone else helped him lay down. I kept that hand on his arm while someone else “called” 911. All I could do was keep my hand on the red line to stop the bleeding.
I don’t think I’ve talked to you about what I think it means to pray for someone, but that story is a perfect illustration.
I have this idea that “praying for” can mean “praying about” or “praying with” someone. So when someone says, “pray for me” they might mean “pray about this situation that I’m in.” Or they might mean “pray with me and ask God to fix this because if we get enough people asking him, he’s bound to pay attention.”
However, I’ve got this idea that “praying for” might mean “Would you talk to God because I can’t right now.”
It’s like, while I was holding my hand on the red line, I couldn’t make a call. But that didn’t mean that I was doing something wrong, it meant that I was engaged.
I said to Nancy late last week, “I’m looking forward to being able to pray again.” I wasn’t ignoring God. I was as aware of his presence and peace as I have ever been. But I didn’t have time for conversation. I was holding my hand on a red line to stop the bleeding. I had friends who were calling 911.