Over at Children with Diabetes (now a subsidiary of Johnson and Johnson, more on that later), there was a thread that really got the emotions going. It was one of those threads that you can just tell by the title it's going to get nasty. Briefly, the parents of a child with diabetes, who was in a coma due to severe hyperglycemia and DKA, sought out prayer rather than medical intervention. Yep. That's what they did. And when the child got worse, they called in more people to pray. Not surprising, the child died, and because of Wisconsin state law, the parents cannot be charged in her death. The actual mechanics of what I believe in this case are a little weighty for our purposes here, so in lieu of spelling out my belief system in gruesome detail, let me say a few things about divine intervention and miracles.
God does not like to be tested. He specifically commands us not to, as in "I'll go to church every Sunday if You'll just do THIS." In the example above, as my wife very intelligently put it, it would be like jumping in front of a bus and saying, OK God, save me. It's not going to happen. Not likely to anyway. I do know, however, that God can and does often intervene when we ask Him to and when He wants to. But He also gave us the ability to learn for a reason. I don't think that good things will happen to us if we just believe hard enough. Otherwise, none of our children would have diabetes, cancer, or anything else. But He does intervene. He does. Indulge me two stories, would you?
For some reason, I always feel compelled to tell this story. I know in my heart it's God that commands me to, and so who am I to tell Him no? When I was in college, I worked at a small Italian restaurant in the kitchen. One night, there had been a terrible ice storm, but because we were enclosed in a kitchen, we didn't know it. So as part of my regular duties, I was carrying a sixth pan (that's about two quarts) of extremely hot grease out to our grease trap in the alley. Just outside the back door, there was a concrete ramp...coated in ice. Next thing I knew, I was lying on the frozen ground with boiling hot grease coated on my right arm. The pain was instant and unbearable. A guy I worked with rode to the hospital with me, and he also happened to be a guy I went to church with. Seeing how severely I was burned, he asked if there was anything he could do, and I asked him to pray. And he did. And he prayed like a good Pentecostal man should pray. Much later, while I was (thankfully) knocked out, the surgeons told my wife that the burn was very bad, and because it went all the way around my arm, there was a good chance I would lose my right hand, but that they'd watch it. The next morning, the surgeon came to see me in the burn unit, and was completely befuddled. He said, "Grease burns are usually the worst. They always get down under your skin and just keep burning because there's nothing to stop it. But in your case, the burning just STOPPED sometime shortly after the accident." It stopped burning just around the time I was riding in the car with my Pentecostal friend.
Sometimes I ask "Why me?" Why did I have to get diabetes? Very early this morning, I got my answer. I awoke sometime around 2am with the wool sweater on my tongue that means my BG is sky-high, and a, let us say urgent, need to pee. When this happens, I always go into the bathroom that is connected to our bedroom, then go to the kitchen to test my BG. Not this time. For some incredibly odd reason, I chose to use the kids' bathroom they share in their hallway. I have no idea why. I've never done it before. When I got to the hallway, I heard Emma's pump alarming. I was very faint, but I could hear it. So I went to her room, and saw she was lying on top of her pump, which had muffled the sound and was why we never heard it through the baby monitor. When I rolled her over and looked at her pump, her BG was 51 and dropping. So to recap, I had a very high BG in the night, which is rare, went to the kids' bathroom, which I've never done in the night, and I heard her pump alarming from down the hall while she was lying on it and it was covered in blankets.
Miracles are kind of like rain. Sometimes it's just a pitter-patter, sometimes it's a big one, sometimes you may have to wait what seems like forever before you get one, and the more you wish for it it seems less likely to happen. Miracles do happen if you just know how not to ask.