According to Merriam Webster’s dictionary the word, Pray, means “to make a request in a humble manner; to address God or a god with adoration, confession, supplication, or thanksgiving”. What does all this mean? I have to say this past month and a half has been perhaps one of the hardest times for my family. We have been through a lot in the past, health wise. My father’s Dissected Aorta in 2001, was to me, what I thought would be the worst of it. To make a long story short, it wasn’t and this past Summer/Fall my family, mostly my father had to make the hardest decision of his life, where to go and which doctor would hold his life in their hands. He chose a doctor at St. Lukes Episcopal Hospital in Houston Texas by the name of Dr. Coselli, a doctor who is a miracle worker among many things. One of his residents described watching a surgery with him by saying “it was like watching god work”.
In having his surgery he had some complications, whereby I made the decision to fly out to Texas to be with my family. On my way there I met a woman at the airport whose sister was “studying” to become a nun. We had a fantastic conversation and she ended it by saying I will pray for your father and your family.
I then got to Texas and met many other families going through similar situations, every conversation ended with “I will pray for your loved one”. Even the shuttle driver who drove us to the hospital everyday would say when we got off the shuttle, I am praying for your family and your father.
This got me thinking. Prayer is a funny thing. Not funny as in haha that was a funny joke, but it is one of those things that makes you wonder about things. Many of us say “I hope I get that ____ “(fill in the blank). But when we really pray, when it is something that really matters, how do we pray. Do our prays “carry more weight” if we pray as a group at a Shabbat Service on Friday night, or when we are sitting silently praying for healing of our friend/relative while sitting on the beach or in a park on a sunny day does God hear our prayers and act? Prayer can take place in any setting at any time of day. Prayer can be a spiritual thing, or it can be a rote praying of the service from the Siddur. Prayer is something that is different to everyone and can take many shapes and forms. Prayers can be interfaith or faith specific. For me, I feel as though I am deep within prayer every time I work with a child, every time I teach, and watch the children grow. For me, being a parent, being a teacher, being a friend, and a family member is all part of my prayer. I feel as though I am doing the work G-d has chosen me to do!
In short, prayer is wonderful, incredible, completely awe inspiring. I would like to thank everyone for the wonderful prayers you have said and sent for my family in this most difficult time. I truly believe that it is because of them that my father is slowly improving and after six weeks of being hospitalized in Houston, Texas, he has returned to Florida to rehab around his family and friends. Please continue to keep my family in your thoughts and prayers!