Our little Fletcher-Boo is 14 months old now, and I couldn’t be more grateful that I have a little wee-one crawling around our house, messing up all our decorations. It’s been a hard, long year with many ups and downs, and one of the most frightening things we went through as parents was concerning her health.
When Fletcher was three months old, we found out at her check-up that she’d gone an entire month without gaining any weight or head-growth; a sign of extreme malnutrition. The doctor thought it was because I wasn’t producing enough milk, so we supplemented with formula.
After two months of supplementing and eventually switching entirely to formula, Fletcher had barely grown. Her pediatrician was very concerned. So concerned, in fact, that she called me after Fletcher’s check-up to ask that I schedule an echocardiogram (which tests for heart disease). I really shouldn’t have, but I was so upset that I decided to go online (I made sure it was a legit medical website) and check for the symptoms of heart disease. What I found broke my heart so completely that I couldn’t sleep or eat. Fletcher exhibited every single symptom, from blue lips to extreme sweating and little-to-no weight gain (there were others, but I won’t get into that).
I learned another valuable lesson about prayer that weekend. I just so happened to be on the praise team at our church that Saturday/Sunday and it was so hard for me to concentrate on worship. All I could think about was my little baby and the fact that she might not live a very long and healthy life. Finally, I couldn’t hold back my tears anymore and I told the worship team. We immediately stopped and prayed for healing for Fletcher. I remember one person praying that when we went in for the echo appt. there would be zero signs of heart disease or any abnormality. Right away, I felt overtaken with peace. I knew God was in control of this situation and I had nothing to fear because of our prayers.
Three days later, I arrived at the hospital for our appointment. It was the longest waiting period ever. Shawn couldn’t be there because he had to work, so he prayed from a distance that morning for a good report. It was apparent right away that the technician wasn’t concerned in the least. And a few days later, when our pediatrician called, we found out that there were zero signs of heart disease or abnormalities! Fletcher had a clean bill of health! That evening, Fletcher ate more than she’d ever eaten before. She guzzled her bottle down and she ate a ton of baby food (which was very unusual for her up until that point).
I will never forget what Shawn said to me that night when we were lying in bed together. “I think God healed Fletcher, April.” My husband is a man of few words. He is the opposite of dramatic and he always keeps his cool. I’d never heard Shawn say something that expressive before. It was his revelation that helped me realize the truth: all of Fletcher’s symptoms disappeared that day because our faith allowed us to pray in such a way that we were expecting God to show His power. And He did.
“… The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results.”
– James 5:16 NLT (italics mine)