By Ed Kitchen –
It seemed a little funny that my brother, his wife, and my sister would suddenly be sick with the same cold. Usually in a household someone will get sick, then a few days later maybe someone else, or after a couple weeks the cold will have been passed around till it’s gone. But all three suddenly getting the same cold at once — on the same day?
Anyway, my brother and his wife seemed to be somewhat okay with their symptoms, and the aches and the pains, but my sister Lynda, recently moved from England, had a more serious case, with terrible headaches every day, cold/flu symptoms, and difficulty breathing.
Still, she felt good enough to take care of it on her own for seven days. We are in the time of covid, though, so there was a little concern when it didn’t disappear after a week. I hoped expectantly for a word of improvement when I called or Face-timed her and was happy one day when she ate for the first time in a while. I hoped this meant improvement, but the next day I got a dreaded call that an ambulance took Lynda to the emergency room and she was in the ICU!
She didn’t want to go to the hospital, but Barbie, my brother’s wife, insisted finally that she go immediately that morning because of her deteriorating condition.
With our receipt of this bad news, and then the news that Lynda had covid (all three had it) we suddenly were in a world of concern, hurt, and fear. Her blood oxygen saturation was only at 50% and her lead doctor wondered how she was alive. The staff were all reluctant and guarded to say that she would get better. Shock and fear!…Can this be really happening?!
In our morning prayer group, we have seen, heard of, and experienced many miracles and healings. We pray for sick family members and others at church. Jesus does say to ask. He says to pray for one another, and we know he likes to heal.
My dear sister Michelle invited me to fast and pray with her for Lynda. As we began to pray, I felt that the Lord bore witness that He does indeed allow people to be taken suddenly like this and often without warning. This was a truth.
Isn’t Lynda like other loved ones who have passed from covid? Would we be plunged into grief and despair like countless others everywhere? How is she different? How are we more worthy?
We felt a dark spiritual entity connected with covid, a coworker with death that held our sister in its grip. This was not fun, light, uplifting prayer. This was a nuts-and-bolts fight — very unpleasant and grievous. There was no escape from this, we had to address it in prayer head-on. We battled in the fear that Lynda could be taken, looking at the reality many people have experienced.
I spoke boldly to God, pleaded with Him, because I realized that Lynda was like many other beloved family members, and it was not an issue of unfairness to Lynda or us.
Without much faith, I prayed:
“Lord, we know that it is better for a believer to go and be with you, and it may be better for You to have them with You, so Lord we ask only that if it could be your will, could we please have Lynda a little longer with us, a few more years with our precious sister? We know she is not better or more deserving than any other of your children who have died, but You indeed came here and said men ought always to pray. You said to ask. You say the prayer of faith will raise up the sick. You say that if any two of us agree on anything you will do it. So still, Lord we ask. We realize we are sinners, please help, please hear, Lord, touch her, have mercy Lord…”
As we agonized in prayer, I discerned the presence of the same dark, sneaky spirit — the covid spirit — that was there to snatch Lynda. This demonic entity seemed to be gloating at the prospect of her imminent death, like it was a done deal. He had no care for her.
I realized I could not live without Lynda, that she was on the chopping block, in the enemy’s grip ready to be taken. His plan seemed like it might succeed, taking her to a place in the sickness where there is no return.
Was God saying he was going to allow her to be taken from us? We labored in prayer for the next two days while Lynda was often unconscious in the ICU. We also prayed for her in our morning prayer group, and also a message prayer chain. We asked everyone to pray, and many said they were praying for her, which brought some comfort.
In this spiritual battle, I felt like we were in a war. In my weakness, we were wrestling with God for his favor, like Jacob, pleading with the Lord according to Scripture and His will. At the same time the devil wanted his way, stating his case to the Lord, ready to consume his next victim, like Lynda was just prey.
As hard and unpleasant as it was, we had to keep fighting. When Jesus was in the garden of Gethsemane praying, it was so agonizing his sweat became like drops of blood. God heard Him, not granting that the cup could pass, but Jesus was strengthened to face the cross.
God, Jesus, in His precious amazing love granted our wish! There was slight improvement. The staff also were very caring and skilled and had learned how to better handle covid patients over time. They had learned of some ways that gave the patients improvements. When she regained consciousness and was strong enough, Lynda sent me a text with a heart and some kisses.
Wow! It was like getting a text from Lazarus. Driving in my car, I couldn’t stop crying for the next 20 miles.
So began her gradual healing and discharge a couple weeks later, just in time for
Christmas! I felt a rush in my soul that confirmed God’s love and a realization of his character. So God turned the agony we felt into rejoicing, for this is indeed his heart to heal and love and bless. That’s his pleasure.
Anyway, thanks for reading my (our) story. By God’s almighty and merciful hand, He ordained for us to participate in this grievous fight. to wrestle our sister Lynda as from the grip of this dark spirit of death that takes loved ones suddenly. The precious Lord Jesus showed his heart and unspeakable love. As it flooded into my heart it turned our darkness into daylight, praise, and rejoicing. God granted that Lynda’s precious spirit could still be with us! Thank You, Lord!!