As Christians, we often have an attitude about prayer similar to an anesthesiologist who said ‘Okay, fine, whatever,’ when one of America’s leading surgeons facing the cancellation of a surgery said he wanted to pray for a patient.
At times, we treat prayer as more of an afterthought, something we should do as Christians, but sometimes treat like an inconvenience.
But, CBN tells the interesting story of the power of a short “Okay, fine, whatever” prayer had in a person’s life, both physically and spiritually.
Duke University’s Doctor Michael Haglund, one of the America’s leading cervical surgeons, was facing the cancellation of a surgery after the anesthesiologist reported that he could not put the man to sleep as his blood pressure was dangerously high at 220/120. He recommended cancelling the surgery.
However, Doctor Haglund replied that before that happened, he wanted to pray for his patient. The anesthesiologist responded with “Okay, fine, whatever.”
And in the operating room, with the patient wide awake, Dr. Haglund uttered a simple prayer and in a few seconds the man’s blood pressure started dropping and when it reached 170, the operation was back on.
Two weeks after the successful operation, the man was back at work.
But the story took an interesting turn six weeks later, when this patient was back to see Dr. Haglund for a routine follow up to the surgery.
He told Haglund that his prayer at the start of the surgery had really impacted him. The patient said “Something changed. Something’s different.”
That simple prayer had so much impact that weeks later Haglund’s patient was still thinking about it. A few minutes later Haglund led him to the Lord.
This story really struck home because I don’t know how many times I have had that “Okay, fine, whatever,” attitude when I was with a group of believers and someone threw out the suggestion we should pray about a specific situation. Usually, it happens just as everyone is about to leave, which I find very inconvenient.
Now I never actually spoke those words out loud, but I was thinking them in my heart. And, I don’t suspect I am the only Christian who has ever had those type of thoughts and I sometimes think as believers we need to check our attitude on prayer.
In 1 Thessalonians 5:20, the Apostle Paul tells us to not despise prophecy. Well, I would like to add one more to that list, do not despise prayer. As Dr. Haglund’s story shows us, the simplest and shortest prayers can have power.
In his vision of the end times, the Apostle John witnessed an unusual event taking place in heaven when he saw 24 elders bowing before the Lamb of God “and they were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of God’s people” (Revelation 5:8).
It tells us that God considers our prayers so valuable that He stores all of them in golden bowls.
If our prayers are this important to God, maybe we should value them as well?