The next prompt from Writing in the Margins:
Isaiah 38:10, prayed by Mesu Andrews, is a deep lament for the one who prays for healing. Use your margins to pray for your healing, others who are battling disease, and to pray for caregivers, doctors, nurse, and therapists.
I have so many thoughts running through my brain as I reflect on this passage:
My thoughts and prayers are with the people of Nepal in the midst of the devastating earthquake. The country already seems burdened by poverty. I think of lives cut short and those left behind, especially the children. My prayers are with them.
My thoughts and prayers are with the friends and family of those who lost their lives in the related avalanche on Everest, living a dream or supporting another’s dream to reach the highest place on earth.
My thoughts are with the friends and family of a local landscaper who died of cancer at 31. His funeral is today. He leaves behind two children that were not his own, but they saw him as a father. I feel for these kids grieving a loss that’s hard to name.
My thoughts are also with those who have been grievously injured while serving in the military. I was at the finish line of the Wounded Warrior ride from Gettysburg to Washington yesterday. Many rode special bikes so they could pedal with their arms. Seeing these men and women is a reminder of how quickly life can change, but their determined spirits are testament to the parts of ourselves that are unchangeable regardless of circumstance.
My thoughts are with those like Mesu Andrews that inspired this prompt: who bravely face long-term chronic illness. I pray that they will have the strength, the courage, and the wisdom to continue caring for themselves and thank God for the unstoppable ways they continue to care and do for others.
My prayers are with those who are recovering from any type of life-threatening illness or situation. I pray that they will be blessed to live life fully and to appreciate little special moments all the more.
I pray for everyone including myself, not to take life or health for granted.
I pray for rescue workers, doctors, nurses, therapists, and caregivers at the forefront of meeting desperate needs. I thank God for their service and ask God’s blessing on their work.
Growing up, my family often went to the Rocky Mountain National Park on vacations, and I went to summer camp at Cheley Colorado Camps. A former camper showed us a slideshow of his own Everest expedition in the early 1990s, and I remember thinking “That is something I never want to do!” after he showed us a slide of a frozen, dead human body still lying on the ice and then told us that the corpse served as a grim reminder of the dangers they faced. That summer a small group of Sherpas from Nepal showed up at our summer camp. I still remember just feeling in total awe of these men. I would huff and puff up the hiking trails and whine for water breaks, but they walked easily with a bounce in their step and plenty of energy to spare. After a day of hiking to the top of a mountain with campers, they returned to camp and built dry stack walls as if they were kids playing with blocks. I’ve never again seen men with such strong and abundant energy. I feel blessed to have been in their presence; they definitely left a lasting impression! From the slideshow of the Everest trip, I also remember seeing pictures of prayer flags hung before the expedition. Every time wind blows the flags, more prayers are offered, a beautiful way to pray without ceasing. So I’ve added some prayer flags to my Bible margins. They won’t blow in the wind, but when I see them I’ll remember to pray again for all of the above, especially the country of Nepal.
The more I think about these memories, the more improbable it seems that I ever hiked with a Sherpa or was in the same room with a mountaineer that climbed Mount Everest. I wish my grown-up self could go back in time and tell my teenage self to pay better attention!!! I Googled “Cheley Colorado Camps” and “Everest” and found the name of a Cheley alum that climbed Mount Everest in 1990: Glenn Porzak. That must be the man I remember giving a slideshow presentation after all these years.