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Advent Devotion - December 10, 2006
An Answer to Prayer

by Juliet H Choi

Praying hands illuminated by a candle offer comfort and peace.

Image by: Margaret Wilbur
Source: GBGM Administration

And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways, to give knowledge of salvation to his people by the forgiveness of their sins. By the tender mercy of our God, the dawn from on high will break upon us, to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.
Luke 1:76-79

Recently I visited a patient dying of cancer in the hospital. She was a beautiful European forty-two-year-old woman and the mother of a nine-year-old. I spent quite some time with the woman and her husband, listening to and sharing their fears, anger, rage, and bitterness. Then, through the courage inspired by the Holy Spirit, we shared God’s mercy and grace.

The three of us prayed together holding hands. We prayed that in the midst of dying, she could find God’s peace and salvation.

As I was leaving the hospital floor, her husband ran after me. He said, “I have been asking the Lord to please send someone who can minister to my wife before she dies. I just want to say thank you so much for the answer to my prayer.”

The husband, soon to be a widower, just wept and wept. I cried with him. I believe that he knew beyond a doubt that God loved him and his wife, no matter how angry they were with God. Through their grief and mourning, God would continue to shine light through the loneliness. God would give comfort and strength.

The dying woman’s husband said he was, “Ever so thankful to God for hearing his prayers and answering him.”

Because of the tender love and mercy of our God, he gives his people discernment and wisdom to follow in the steps of our savior in preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. God gives strength to the weary, and comfort to those who are mourning. God cries with those who are sorrowful, holds hands with the dying, and empowers us to serve God without fear. 

We, God’s servants, are called prophets of the most high, for we go before the Lord to prepare the way for Him. We shine on those living in darkness or with cancer. In the shadow of death, God’s salvation and peace reigns.

Juliet H. Choi is a deaconess serving as a research chemotherapy nurse at MemorialSloanKetteringCancerCenter in New York City. Since 1979, Juliet administers chemotherapy to leukemia, lymphoma, and solid-tumor patients. While following patients throughout the treatment cycles, Juliet brings God’s forgiveness, mercy, salvation, peace, strength, courage, and healing to cancer patients.

See Also...
Topic: Advent Children Christian love Christmas Family GBGM programs Jesus Christ Prayers United Methodist Church
Geographic Region: North Eastern U.S.United States
Source: Mission Personnel

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Date posted: Dec 08, 2006