by guest blogger Susan Mathews
The wails and bright lights of ambulance sirens made the eyes of all my children go wide. Their mouths would drop open in wonder. They would stretch as much as their car seat buckles would allow them to capture the sight of the red and white lights flying by their windows. The innocence of childhood is a precious thing to be protected. “What happened? Why is that so loud? Why do we hear them every time in the car?” The questions were endless, but I enjoyed watching their expressions for many years.
As they grew older, their thoughts and questions became deeper. “I want to be a policeman when I grow up. I want to help people. I want to chase the bad guys.” Their brains were growing and developing! They imagined the thrill of saving lives and the reward of changing lives. Not to mention the excitement of driving through a red light.
In a side-by-side spiritual realm, the children grew up believing in a God that they could not see. They trusted that the prayers they prayed would be answered, as they spoke to the God they could not see. Their faith was immutable. Truly, child-like faith is the call that Jesus gave us all to model. I watched that grow in front of my eyes.
But how do I help the children grow in faith, even as their physical bodies grow, and brains understand more and more of the physical world? There has to be a mesh of understanding, and it may take some time, but it has to happen.
When the sirens wailed, I told the children that someone very sick is in that ambulance. Let’s pray for that person. I watched the understanding dawn their eyes, and they immediately would pray for the sick person traveling to the hospital.
As they grew older, the children realized that the sick person may have family behind who are crying. They understood that EMTs could be doing life-saving measures in the back of the ambulance and medical staff would be waiting to help them when they arrived at the hospital. They prayed for miracles to happen. Even though they could not see an ‘answer’ to their prayers, they trusted in the love and nature of God who they could not see.
Though we cannot see the wind, don’t we believe in its existence? We may not receive the answer to our prayers in the way we wanted, but can we be assured that the God we serve hears every prayer? If He leaves the 99 all in search of the 1 that is lost, then doesn’t He care about you and me? Believe it.
God and His Word do not change. We can put our hope in His Word, even when our world is falling apart.
I never anticipated on October 9, 2019, an ambulance screaming down Interstate 24 would be carrying my firstborn, Philip. I was alone, and I did not know how to help my child. I watched the city lights go by my window. And suddenly the words I had spoken to my children, came back to speak to me. “Pray for the person in the ambulance. Pray for the EMTs trying to save their life. Remember the family that is crying for their loved one. Pray for the medical staff that will receive the ambulance at the hospital”.
Through the tears, I smiled. Because I knew that someone was praying for this ambulance. And I knew that God heard every prayer.
Susan Mathews is an author, speaker, and co-founder of Love Without Reason. There is plenty of humor and inspiration to share as a mother of three children. Raising a child with multiple craniofacial differences to excel against all the medical odds and graduate from high school is a story she shares
around the globe. Grieving the loss of a child and picking up the mantle of his dream is a challenge she inspires in her audience.
After serving in the healthcare industry as a nurse and nurse practitioner for over two decades, she laid down her stethoscope and picked up the spear to fight human trafficking. She is a blogger and author of two books. “A Mother’s Heart” was published in 2012 and “If Philip Can, You Can Too,” the autobiography that Philip began and Susan completed and published after he went to heaven in October 2019. She is resolved to continue Philip’s legacy and work “Until the World is Cleft Free and Until No More Are Sold.”