Written by Sherry
Wednesday, 15 August 2007 08:28
The Seattle Times reporter, Jerry Brewer, who is covering Gloria and her family (Gloria is an 11 year old cancer patient in crisis whose fight has been covered by the Seattle Times over the past 4 months) is keeping a blog and this is his most recent entry:
"As promised, I want to tell more about last night's touching prayer session.
It was truly a sight to see about 30 people praying around Gloria. With the permission of Gloria's parents, we taped portions of it. Once audio is edited, we plan to make it available online, perhaps by tomorrow morning.
In the meantime, I'm going to give some highlights from last night.
-- Kristen shared that she heard God give her a message in Gloria's diction: "Give her to God and let Him do his thang."
Kristen was searching for what to do. When those words popped into her head, she was comforted. Gloria is a big "American Idol" fan, and she can do impressions of all the judges. Her Randy Jackson may be the funniest, and the way Kristen heard the words, "do his thang" sounded much like Gloria imitating Jackson.
To explain it very simply, Kristen took it to mean God was assuring her that Gloria will be just fine.
-- Kristen also read a passage from the Magnificat, a collection of spiritual writings that she reads every day. This just happened to be the selected reading for Monday:
"Let the Lord, God, show us what way we should take and what we should do. To God, the darkest the steps of the human heart are as clear as the page of a book lying open in the sunlight. He knows us through and through, and He loves us as deeply as He knows us. Rather than hide from Him, let us put our life in the hands that fashioned us and allow Him to lead us in the path of eternal life."
Said Kristen: "Just hearing that, it confirmed to us that God is still walking with us in this and that He's still guiding us. He's not abandoning us."
-- Jessica Morley, a senior-to-be at Kennedy High School in Burien, where Gloria's father teaches and coaches, revealed that she had a dream Saturday night.
"I had a dream that I was talking to a man, and I was explaining to him how frustrated I was that so many people are giving up on Gloria's miracle," Morley said. "He told me that I don't have to be like them. That I don't have to settle for an average faith.
"When I woke up in the morning, those words were ringing in my head, and it gave me a lot of comfort."
Back story on Morley: As an infant, she had neuroblastoma, but doctors found it early enough to save her. She's now in remission. Though the situations are different, the Strausses look at Morley as an inspiration.
-- Random quote from Gloria's father, Doug, talking about praying with conviction: "Like Shaq said, don't fake the funk on a nasty dunk."
Doug uses humor to get through all of this. But he warned everyone last night, "I'm not using humor to hide from the truth. I am being realistic."
-- And here's the moment that made me tear up: Watching Seattle University student Diana McKune, who has a brain cancer called intracranial germinoma, get out of a wheelchair in struggle, in pain, to get on her knees to pray at Gloria's bed.
McKune met Gloria a few years ago and has been taken by her story ever since.
It was an unbelievable night.
-- On a personal note, all of this is reminding me of the value of community. As I've tried to rise in journalism, I've gone from city to city, trying not to settle in too much because I don't want to be afraid to run to the next opportunity.
Because of some childhood experiences, I've also been against being part of a church community. I've preferred to study the Bible alone or in small groups and visit churches from time to time but not join one.
I became jaded because there are always negatives when a large number of people gather and try to do something together. Jealousy. Gossip. Back-stabbing. Those kinds of things.
This experience has taught me that there are church communities with different DNA, and I shouldn't be so stubborn. My faith has always been there, but my faith in others waned. Now that is starting to turn.
It's been an invaluable revelation.
It doesn't really influence how I write this series, but it may change my life in the very near future."