“Thanks.” Just the word lifts the spirit. “Thanks” proclaims, “I’m not disadvantaged, disabled, victimized, scandalized, forgotten, or ignored. I am blessed.” To say “thanks” is to celebrate a gift, to see miracles in the midst of pain.
My young friend Rebecca does. Twelve-year-old Rebecca has spent the last four years in pain. “On a scale of one to ten,” the doctor explained, “she is a twelve every day.” Rebecca’s pancreas has shut down. After a dozen operations and changes in medication, no solution is in sight.
Pretty tough challenge. But Rebecca is a tough kid. She has fudge-brown hair, eyes that sparkle, a weatherproof smile, and a book of miracles. She showed it to me. I thought she was asleep. Her mom and I conversed in whispered tones in the corner of the hospital room. Homemade sketches hung on the walls. A covey of stuffed animals occupied the couch. Someone had sent a cookie bouquet. I eyed it.
“Mommy.” Rebecca’s voice was groggy.
“Can you show Mr. Max my Miracle Book?”
It’s a spiral notebook, edges weathered, adorned with crayoned flowers, stars, and an occasional clown. In the handwriting of a child, miracles:
“I slept all night last night.”
“Daddy snuck a puppy into the hospital.”
“Mommy is going to place a Christmas tree in the corner.”
Her body is in revolt. Her parents are concerned. The doctors are confused. But Rebecca has made a decision. She is going to choose gratitude. She thanks God for miracles. If Rebecca can find reasons to say thanks, can’t we? If Rebecca can find miracles in the midst of pain, can’t we?
Pray with me today for Rebecca. She needs another miracle. She’s facing her biggest challenge tomorrow: a Total Pancreatectomy with Auto-Islet Transplantation. Let’s thank God for Rebecca and ask him for a successful operation, blessings for the doctors, and a long healthy life. Let’s ask God for Rebecca’s miracle.
Excerpted from Before Amen ©Max Lucado 2014, Thomas Nelson, Inc.