Joy in Prayers Answered

Our mouths were filled with laughter today when we heard about Derek’s story of God touching his life. We heard good news. Today it is often the case that people are burdened and sad and don’t have much joy.

We were saying our goodbyes to friends at the hotel in Zakynthos before going to the airport. A couple from England, Derek and Linda were standing at the bar. They were frequent visitors to Zakynthos and only stay at this hotel. They are personal friends with the family who own the hotel.

Our host told us about Derek. He was a kind person and did much charity work back home. She often went on holiday to England to visit with him and his family. But his health was failing. He had diabetes, had kidney failure and attended hospital in the Uk three times a week for dialysis.

Needing dialysis did not deter Derek going on holiday to his favorite place. Arrangements were made for treatment on the island while he came on holiday. It meant going to his room every four hours and taking the necessary drugs to help cleanse his blood. He didn’t want to give up.

We happened to meet him back in 2015. He told us about having treatment for kidney failure and was hoping to have a kidney transplant. My husband and I prayed for him to get a new kidney in the name of Jesus. We believe that Jesus heals today. I know Jesus power has healed me of fourth stage cancer and I always love the opportunity to tell others what God has done for me. I prayed on the basis of Psalm 41.

Blessed are those who have regard for the poor.
The LORD sustains them on their sickbed and restores them from their bed of illness.”
‭‭Psalm‬ ‭41:3‬ ‭NIV‬‬

We didn’t see Derek again until today. When my husband spoke to him today tears welled up in his eyes. His wife started crying and our host started crying. He told us what happened after we prayed. He didn’t feel any different immediately and had to continue using the dialysis. A few days later he got a phone call from a friend back in his home town. Arrangements were being made for him to have a kidney transplant.

Derek was seventy years old. The doctors had told him there was little chance of him receiving a donated kidney if one became available on the NHS. Younger patients would be given priority before him because of his age. He was way down the waiting list. He was resigned to living with his condition and remained cheerful. He continued to think of others before himself. He was well thought of in his community.

A friend talked to Derek one day and told him he heard of a man , let’s call him John, who wanted to donate one of his kidneys to someone. John’s wife was a nurse in the kidney unit of the hospital. He was touched by the need of patients whose stories his wife related to him. John decided he wanted to do something to help another person.

Derek’s friend said he would tell John about Derek’s situation. He received a phone call on holiday from John after we prayed for him. John offered Derek his kidney. Derek remembered our prayers. God was answering our prayers for healing by giving him a donated kidney!

The process began back home to see if John’s kidney would be a good match for Derek. The doctors were amazed that John was offering his kidney. Tests were done and it was found that the donated kidney would be agreeable with Derek’s body. The doctors operated to give Derek a new kidney. The operation went well.

One year on Derek is still going on holiday and no longer needs dialysis. There has been no reaction in Derek’s body to reject the donated kidney. The doctors said it was a miracle that the kidney became available and that it was a match. They suggested Derek’s story would make a great article in a newspaper.

This is the first time this story has been published. God is good. He answers our prayers. If anyone wants to hear more about prayer for healing please get in touch.

We prayed for Derek again today and thanked God for his mercy for Derek’s healing. My husband and I left the island of Zakynthos today with laughter and joy because God answered our prayers.

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/laughter/

Sun, Sea and Sand in Zakynthos

The sun sets over the hill to the west on the last evening of our holiday in Zakynthos.  Shadows are cast along the shore as the sun beds are folded away and umbrellas are pulled down.  Footprints in the soft sand are a sign of the many people that have passed this way today.

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The cool of the evening is very welcome after a hot day.  I believe anyone coming to this beach will leave rested, healed, beautified, blessed, rejuvenated, refreshed and restored.

He leads me beside still waters to restore my soul.  I thank God I am alive to enjoy the goodness of God in the land of the Living.

He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul.   (‭Psalm‬ ‭23‬:‭2-3‬ NIV)

I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. (‭Psalms‬ ‭27‬:‭13‬ KJV)

We have met people from different nationalities, German, Russian, English, Greek, and Austrian.  We have met young and old, from the babies and toddlers to the two eighty something year old couples that were our neighbors at the poolside.  We could not communicate but we all were enjoying the warmth of the sun on our bodies in the silence.

A swim in the sea is welcome to cool our bodies.  It is no effort to swim in the salty, still, shallow waters.  The young and not so young, able bodied and not so able bodied, buxom and slim alike, bodies modestly covered and others less well covered take a dip.

This is a favorite beach not only for sunbathers but also for Turtles.  The females lay their eggs high up on the beach in May and the young hatch out in October.

Earlier today our friend brought us to a faviourite restaurant, high above the town of Zakynthos.  We enjoyed the glorious view, the red roofed houses below, and the blue bay shimmering in the sunshine beyond.  A Ferryboat from the Greek mainland announces it’s arrival into the harbor with a loud horn blast.  We watch it dock.  Other boats are dwarfed by this new Ferry.

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For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord as the waters cover the sea. (‭Habakkuk‬ ‭2‬:‭14‬ NIV)

We return from this haven to the hear of the turmoil in the nations.  A new Labour leader has been elected and some countries of Europe close their borders to Immigrants.

I will keep looking to Jesus, like Peter in the storm.  He could walk on the water as long as he fixed his eyes on Jesus.

“Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.” “Come,” he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. (‭Matthew‬ ‭14‬:‭28-29‬ NIV)

No Debit Card in Greece

This week Brendan and I are in Zakynthos, our favourite Greek island. Brendan only has a debit card. The day before we left Ireland I canceled this card and ordered a new one. This new card in now in our post box back in Ireland two and a half thousand miles away. To say Brendan was unhappy when he found out is a bit of an understatement. We are budgeting whatever cash we brought.

We arrived last evening. It was a cool, had been raining, was very windy and the sea was stormy. Many hotels are closed as it is near the end of the season. Brendan was wondering if his favourite restaurant was open. Would there be any days in the sunshine? We sat out on the veranda and looked up at the bright full moon. I reassured Brendan that God is our shepherd and he promises to lead us beside still waters and green pastures to restore our souls, Psalm 23.

It is good to be back here. I am expecting to be rested, despite the jet lag. I have mentioned before that God intends for us to have times of feasting. Scripture says I would have fainted if I failed to see the goodness of God in the land of the living.

Sure enough this morning the wind stopped, the sea stilled, the sun shone, we sunbathed and ate at our favourite beach restaurant!

Zakynthos is a place we visited nineteen years ago this month. We met our good friend then. She remembers the exact date that Brendan baptised her.

We have been back to the island about twenty times. It has proven to be a place where we get rest, healing, sunshine, good food, and renew fellowship with our friend and our other good friend a Greek Orthodox nun.

Brendan brought me here just after I was diagnosed with cancer. I did not want to go anywhere after getting the news, but God strengthened me. Instead of being in hospital I was on holiday!

My body clock is still working on Irish time so I am wide awake. I have time to reflect on God’s goodness and faithfulness. We are here for fourteen days so Brendan suggested I write a little about each child on each day we are here. He promised to help me.

Shann is my first born, my beautiful, blond, curly-haired girl. Brendan and I used to talk in the night what the name of our first born baby would be. He used to say “This is a special child that has brought us together.” We rehearsed all the names we knew. Then one night I said “A cousin of mine is called Shann.” Brendan said “That’s the name if this child is a girl.”

Shann is a leader and a hard worker. I didn’t realise she was going to be the first of so many. She was an enormous help with her siblings, quietly working away without complaint. She may have found it hard at times but never showed it.

Shann now looks after her husband and four children. When Shann was expecting our first grandchild Brendan had a dream. In the dream he saw a blond haired boy. Jean Luc was born soon after.

All that training years ago did not go to waste. Shann is a great encourager and has a ministry of helps. She built up her local play group when her children were pre school age. He helps her neighbours and now works full time as a Community Nurse. People are always glad to see Shann arrive at their door. Well done Shann.

Brendan and I are proud of you.