A friend of mine was recently in an extremely distressed state. The reason for this quickly became clear to me: he had just received a dreadful medical report regarding his 5 year old daughter. She had undergone medical tests and when the results came through they gave no hope whatever for her survival.
The medical report was clear, unambiguous and definitive.
I felt at a loss for anything helpful to say to comfort my friend. I suggested that the report might perhaps be wrong. My friend, who is himself a very senior doctor with considerable expertise and experience in his field of medicine, wearily explained to me that any prospect of the report being incorrect was extremely remote. When I continued to press the possibility of error, it seemed only to exasperate my friend who knew only too well how carefully the various samples are treated and tested by the lab. By comparison to his knowledge, my own ignorance of the system was striking.
This meant that any chance of his daughter surviving were vanishingly small. It was obvious that he felt absolutely hopeless and wretched. His misery was made even worse because, by reason of his expertise, he understood only too well how unlikely any chance of a positive outcome would be.
Into this heart-breaking situation he chose to set aside his desperate anxiety and put the matter to the Lord in prayer. He prayed in faith and especially relied on the scripture that his daughter would not die but live (Ps 118:17). If any prayer can described as heartfelt it was this one.
No words can express the joy felt by this father when - only 7 days later - the impossible news came through that the original report had indeed been wrong. Further comprehensive and repeated tests now revealed a clean bill of health. The little girl now enjoys great health and is a great delight to see. To God be the Glory!