DAY 13: PRAY FOR CHILDREN WHO HAVE CHILDHOOD CANCER AND THEIR FAMILIES – TERI DODD
“Have you not known? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might he increases strength. Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.”
In the US, 15,780 children 0-19 are diagnosed with cancer each year (43 children per day). It’s the #1 cause of death by disease among children. 20% of children with cancer in the US will not survive it. Two out of three childhood cancer patients will have long lasting chronic conditions from the treatments.
To watch these little warriors battle each day through horrific treatments meant to rid them of the cancer is heartbreaking. To see God touch their little lives and give them strength when most adults would give up is nothing short of a miracle.
But the reality of childhood cancer is that I’ve also prayed with moms whose child battled this disease and did not survive. It’s in those times, Romans 8:26 becomes real (…the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express). It’s then that you realize God has answered your prayer to heal a child; He has healed every single child who did not survive cancer. They are healed and whole in the arms of their Heavenly Father.
The miracles in childhood cancer are endless as we serve a mighty God. The child who is leukemia free four years post bone marrow transplant – alive, well and acting just like a “normal” 7-year-old boy is nothing short of a miracle; in 2015, a 7-year-old boy was given a 4% chance of survival when diagnosed with a Glioblastoma brain tumor and today is a thriving Jesus follower. But the ugly truth about childhood cancer is that many children (over 3,000 in the US each year) will not survive. It’s for those parents my heart breaks. It’s for those parents I pray they are able to hang on to their faith or find Jesus while they travel that lonely road of grief.
BUT GOD is the final answer to childhood cancer. The saying goes, “If you ever see a child fight cancer, it will change your life forever.” It did mine because God revealed himself over and over again in the lives of these warriors.
Father God, our Healer, Physician and Creator, we come humbly before You today lifting up each and every child warrior battling cancer today. We pray that the treatments will eradicate the cancer with no lingering side effects. We pray these warriors and their families will draw close to You now, trusting You along this journey they never anticipated nor wanted. We lift those parents up to You whose children did not survive. We pray You will hold them especially close when they feel their whole world has been shattered. We ask that You put people in their lives who will hold them up and point them to Jesus. In the mighty name of Jesus we pray, amen
- September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month – learn more about it.
- Volunteer with or donate to one of the local non-profits who support these families.
- Most importantly, please pray for these children.
- Run, jog, or walk the thirteenth mile out of the total of 21.
- Do 22 sit-ups and 22 push-ups.