Prayers for the Week: Remembering Melissa


10 fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. ~ Isaiah 41:10 (ESV)

My friends, today I’m writing to you saddened by a lot of loss that I’ve seen my dear friends go through this past week.  Today, I share my love with all of you, and remind you of the best thing I can share with you — those incredibly wonderful words that Our Lord God gave to us in the Bible.  Sprinkled throughout this post, my prayer is that you’re going to find Comfort, you’re going to find Peace, you’re going to come away feeling renewed, and I hope, for those that I’m crying with, you’ll come away knowing that your loved ones are in a much better place than we are, and that they are looking down on you with love, seeing you through to the end.  We start our journey by remembering Melissa, the sister of one of my great friends, Lindsey.  These are her words:

The universe gained the most beautiful angel today.

Our sweet Melissa was one of the most selfless people I’ve ever known and one that always wanted to help others, so much so that she was an organ donor. Melissa was pronounced today and now we begin the organ donation process. Thank you all so much for all the prayers and outreach, and please hug your loved ones closer than ever because you just never know when it’s your last time. Pray for her sweet boy, her whole world, Holden and her fiancé Shaun. Pray so hard for my parents; parents should *never* have to bury their children.

Melissa is now an angel to everyone but especially to her sweet boy Holden, and to my daughter Natalie. Natalie and Melissa were *best* friends. Pray as we try to explain this to Holden and Natalie.

Melissa, thank you for showing everyone you met unconditional love always. Everyone who knew you loved you.

My family would love to be lifted up by stories about Melissa; please comment below with your favorite memory (or memories) of her.

Yesterday, Melissa went through one last  procedure; a life-giving procedure that will benefit many people for years to come.  Melissa was an organ donor, and her organs were all viable and able to be shared with those in need.  That was done yesterday.  God took this incredibly sad, tragic tale, the loss of a mother, a sister, a fiancé, a daughter, and He gave her some other, incredible titles to go with all of those: a Life Saver, an Angel, a Child of God.  Once again, God turned what was a tragedy into a blessing for so many other families.

Lindsey, my heart goes out to you, and to all of your family.  To your parents, to your husband, to your children, to Melissa’s fiancé, to her child.  Lindsey, please pass along to your family that I and my family are praying for all of you, and will continue to do so.

Please continue reading with our other prayer requests and praises:

Prayer Requests and Praises

  • My friend Trena has a prayer request: Some of you may remember our baby Silas Jabali, who is now a big five year old! His family and I are friends and they live here in Kenya, in Nairobi. Please pray for them. This was their post tonight….“Please pray for Silas. After a consultation with the neurologist and a CT scan, we have found the cause of the headaches, praise the Lord. His brain is pressing into the frontal lobe of his skull. He will go in on Thursday to have a probe inserted into his brain to find the cause of the pressure. After the neurologist can find the cause of the pressure, we will know our options. Silas will also have his shunt removed at this time.
    Please pray for our family, for the peace of God to rest on us and especially on Silas.”

    • Unfortunately, this was the most recent update on Silas from Trena: Friends, please pray for the Ferguson family. Jabali did not enter into heaven as an orphan. He knew full well the love of a father, and a mother, and of a family. And because of that, the presence of his Heavenly Father was completely familiar to him. Jabali knew great love.
      from his parents…
      “It is with tear-stained cheeks, broken hearts and praise on our lips that we announce the passing of our darling, Silas Jabali Andrew Ferguson. We thank you for your donations, prayers, love and care. Please continue to keep us in your prayers as we grieve a very special little boy.
      Praise God from whom all blessings flow, praise Him all creatures here below. Praise Him above ye heavenly hosts, praise Father, Son and Holy Spirit.”
  • My friend Vonni has a prayer request: The little boy here who was shot yesterday at school, Jacob. He’s on life support, they lost him twice and will most likely have severe brain damage if he lives. It’s pitiful.
    • Sadly, we learned that Jacob passed away yesterday.  God has this latest angel, please pray for his family and friends.
  • My cousin Barb has a prayer request: Continued prayers for my brother in law and his family. #CancerSucks
  • My niece Leslie has a request: A healthy and safe delivery whenever Paisley is ready
  • My friend Maureen has a passage from Scripture she is sharing with us: I want to share a passage God led me to…. Lamentations 3:22-26 New International Version (NIV)22 Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
    for his compassions never fail.
    23 They are new every morning;
    great is your faithfulness.
    24 I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion;
    therefore I will wait for him.”
    25 The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him,
    to the one who seeks him;
    26 it is good to wait quietly
    for the salvation of the Lord.
  • My friend Diane was in our prayers recently regarding her Mom.  Here is what Diane wrote: Tuesday morning, the 27th, we received a call from Mama’s nurse. Her breathing had changed, so we went over. She was awake, but very weak. Dave and I sat down and I held her hand and sang some hymns to her. Her breathing began to slow, then stopped – a completely peaceful ending to a long life. We are so grateful to have had Mama with us for 95 years. A service to celebrate her life will be held on Monday October 10th at 3:00 pm at Edenton Street United Methodist Church. You are all invited to worship with us, and to share tea and cookies afterwards in our Commons area. Her ashes will join Papa’s next summer when Rolls come to NC.
    Thanks for all your prayers and thoughts.
  • My friend Julia has a prayer request.  Here is what she wrote: Please pray for Herm. He needs surgery to stop one leg from growing faster than the other.
  • Prayers for the family of my friend Bill Nichols, who passed away this past Thursday.  Bill was 62 and a friend of mine at UNC-TV.  Bill, your spirit will not soon be forgotten, my friend.
  • Lastly, I leave you with these words of Witness from my friend Leslie: I was awakened late tonight by Meg, who needed to visit “the necessary”. It had been a difficult and negative day for me – I am normally pretty optimistic and have a natural tendency to focus on the bright things of life, but today all my troubles and failings were brought over and over to my mind as the storm clouds sulked overhead and the rains fell.Unable to sleep after my nocturnal interruption, I moved to the recliner in the bedroom and prayed “Father, please send me angels to minister to me, to relieve the pain I feel in my heart and body” – and He said “I have”.  
    My thoughts ran back through my day – a friend that was in my home that rolled comfort up and down my back (thank you, Eileen). Another friend I bumped into when picking up my son at a store offered cheery words and a smile (thank you, Carol). In the evening I attended a church potluck where I got to hold a little angel in my lap and a dear friend shared in my sorrow (thank you, Debbie), and I met an old friend for the first time who let me know that I have been able to bring some happiness into the lives of others (thank you, Paula). Paul spoke in Corinthians- 
    “…there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.8 For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness”

    I think we all have thorns – physical ailments, or emotional situations or problems – that sometimes can sit unnoticed, but when brushed up against or irritated or bruised can flare into immense pain. I know I do – I can be brought to tears by my thoughts and left in a depression that can linger on and darken my life for days. But with my infirmities, with my thorn, God has provided grace and help through my fellow travelers on the earth – you, my angels – to remind me that I am not alone, and to remind me that I can be an angel in someone else’s life. Thank you for being a part of my life – for the comfort and cheer you give me. Remember as you go through your days that just the memory of your smile and kind words can be a light in someone’s bleak hours. You matter, you make a difference. You make a difference to me.

Pray, my friends.  Pray for these requests and all of the unspoken ones that we never hear about.  Pray, because your life truly does depend on it.  Read these words from Jesus:

1“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. 2In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? 3And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. 4And you know the way to where I am going.” 5Thomas said to him, “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?” 6Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.” ~ John 14:1-7 (ESV)

Now, please pray with me the words that Jesus taught us to pray:

Our Father, who art in Heaven,
Hallowed be Thy Name.

Thy Kingdom Come, Thy Will be done
On Earth as it is in Heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread
And forgive us our trespasses,
As we forgive those that trespass against us.

Lead us not into temptation
But deliver us from evil.

For Thine is the Kingdom, and Power, and Glory
Forever and ever. Amen.

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