Like most families, ours is scattered across multiple states. But every year we set aside a week in the summer for our kids to bond at “Cousins’ Camp.” They spend hours playing outside together and inventing new games. But this past summer, work obligations kept my husband and me at home. Our kids didn’t seem to mind as we sent them to Cousins’ Camp without us. Every time we called them, they only had enough time to say, “Love you—gotta go!”
Until one Thursday.
At about two o’clock that morning, we got a call. Our oldest son was struggling to breathe.
We weren’t concerned. We figured he’d been abusing his body all week—getting little sleep, eating who knows what, and running about in the heat until he dropped. He’d probably caught a cold.
“You don’t understand,” his aunt said on the other end of the line. “This is not the prop-him-up-on-a-pillow kind of struggling. He’s not able to draw a full breath. His lungs are wheezing. He’s having an asthma attack.”
“Tyler doesn’t have asthma,” we told her.
“Then we need to go to the hospital.”
Those are not the words a mom wants to hear when she is three hours away from her son—and especially when the closest major hospital is just as far.
“Give Tyler the phone,” we said.
When Tyler took the phone, we heard nothing but faint gasps.
“Tyler James, in the name of Jesus, BREATHE!” we commanded. And for a couple of minutes, we continued to speak over Tyler’s body, telling his muscles to relax and his airways to open. Unable to respond, Tyler gave the phone back to his aunt.
“What do you want me to do?” she asked.
“We prayed for him,” we told her. “Just let us know if anything changes.” And we hung up.
Genuinely scared for his life, Tyler’s aunt sat up with him all night. My husband, on the other hand, remembered what he had learned from The Believer’s Authority teaching: God has already provided everything we need through Christ. It’s not God’s turn to heal; it’s our turn to believe. So, completely at peace, he turned over and fell back to sleep.
But as desperately as I wanted to follow my husband’s example, I couldn’t. I knew God’s Word. I knew what Christ had provided, but I also knew that Andrew’s words in The Believer’s Authority book were true when he said, “If someone isn’t healed, it’s not God who didn’t heal them—it’s us not using our authority and power” (p. 80). I was scared I would fail, and I wasn’t willing to let my son die while I “practiced” authority.
Battling fear, I prayed in tongues for a few minutes. Then I remembered Psalm 4:8:
I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety
New International Version
I thanked God that He was with my son even when I couldn’t be. Then I fell asleep.
The next morning we called to see how Tyler was doing. His aunt said, “He’s fine. But I’ve never been so scared in all my life.” Later, when we asked Tyler about that night, he said, “I wasn’t afraid. I knew God was with me and that I would be fine.” And I knew again the faithfulness of God!