Touched by a Teenager: Peyton’s Prayer
Friends, did you know it’s your comments that often direct me to the topics these weekly posts should tackle?
That’s why today you need to hear the amazing story of Rhonda and Peyton Cahill.
The sheer volume of responses on my website and Facebook to last week’s “Touched by An Angel” was unprecedented, but do you know what thrilled me most?
You not only joined us in praising God for Rebecca’s healing at an interstate gas station, but you also genuinely rejoiced with a woman most of you have never met.
“Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.” Romans 12:15 NIV
But the great question remains: Why are some healed quickly, others only after months or years, and still others not until we receive our new bodies on the far side of eternity?
Some of you reading these words right now inhabit my constant prayers because you are living in chronic pain or with a diagnosis considered terminal.
I can’t help but cry out, “Lord, when will you heal P_ and G_and K_ and so many others who have suffered terribly? Their families need them. I need them in my life!”
Many volumes have been written by those attempting to address the question of why God does not always answer prayer the way we hope he will.
Some cite lack of faith – and yet who has demonstrated more faith than international disability advocate Joni Eareckson Tada, who has lived without the use of her limbs since a diving accident over 50 years ago left her paralyzed from the neck down?
Others introduce the question of sin – yet why then would so many innocent infants suffer from birth? (See Jesus’ response to that question in John 9:2-3).
Friends, if I were to attempt to offer a definitive answer as to why some healings take place “naturally” (through medical and other means), some “supernaturally” (through the fervent intercession of human or angelic beings petitioning God, who alone can heal), and some never on this side of eternity, you could brand me a heretic.
We simply do not know.
“God knows that when things happen when we want them to happen, we celebrate. But when things happen after we think it’s too late for them to happen, we worship.” Laurie Polich Short
Part of the tension of being a spiritual being living an earthly existence is the presence of mystery. God’s ways are not our ways, his thoughts not our thoughts, and he is beyond time as we know it.
“As you do not know the path of the wind, or how the body is formed in a mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the work of God, the Maker of all things.” Ecclesiastes 11:5
Another author told me this week that a well-known faith-based magazine does not share stories of medical miracles, even well-documented, because they don’t wish to discourage readers or give them false hope that they, too, will experience healing.
But friends, isn’t the opposite true? When we hear verifiable stories like Rebecca Taft’s **, it’s a reminder that our God can do anything, and he can work through anyone he chooses.
The power is not in the prayer itself or the pray-er but in the One who hears it.
And in October of last year in the state of Montana, God responded in a miraculous way to the fervent prayer of a 14-year-old named Peyton.
Here is how Peyton’s grandmother, my longtime friend Carol Cahill, describes what happened:
“Our daughter-in-law Rhonda has suffered from debilitating knee pain from a fall for years. She has had several surgeries and procedures performed on her knee, always searching for another doctor who could help.
“Last October, Rhonda was facing yet another surgery. After over forty scans and x-rays, the surgeon informed her she would need a cadaver tendon as well as cadaver cartilage as she had none. Rhonda was in for a very long period of bedrest with zero pressure on her foot due to the absolutely necessary cartilage replacement.
“The night before surgery, her 14-year-old daughter, Peyton, asked her mom if God still did miracles. Rhonda said, ‘Oh, yes!’
“Peyton then began praying over her. She asked specifically that Jesus would take care of the cartilage so her mother’s convalescence would not be so lengthy. Peyton asked that Jesus would start the surgery early and that her mother could get up much sooner and be allowed to put a little pressure on her knee. She prayed the same prayer repeatedly for 15 minutes.
“When Rhonda woke up after surgery, the surgeon said, ‘You won’t believe this, but I didn’t have to replace the cartilage because yours was pristine!”
Friends, how could this be after over 40 scans that showed a total lack of cartilage? Medical x-rays don’t lie.
And neither does God when he tells us repeatedly that nothing – absolutely nothing – is impossible with Him.
This young teenager took her mother at her word when Rhonda assured her that God still performs miracles. And Peyton took God at his word.
Something much more important than a knee was strengthened here.
- Maggie Wallem Rowe
** For many documented stories of modern-day healings, I recommend Greater Things Than These by my cousin Jan de Chambrier, a chaplain and ordained international intercessor. (Also available on Kindle).
Maggie's new hardcover gift book from Tyndale House Publishers will soon be available anywhere books are sold. Please check with your local bookstore. You may also order a copy online. Here are two links: Christianbook.com (currently $10.99) or Amazon (currently $14.99).