When Answer to Prayer Comes Slowly

I stood in our three-season porch, warm, bright sunshine pressing through the open window. My pre-school boy pedaled his training bike down the sidewalk that cut through the yard of our century-old home. Behind him, a younger brother pulled a small wagon. "What'll it be?" I asked when he stopped in front of the window. "Peanut butter and jelly, or peanut butter and jelly?"

My blond boy smiled wide. "Peanut butter, please." He poked his thumb in the direction of the rumbling wagon. "For him too."

I handed one brown bag and then another through the window. My son put them in his bike basket and pedaled toward the picnic table under the maple.

Drive through lunch.

One of their favorite games.

In no time, we'd sit together, sharing food and conversation about everything from beetles to the blue of the sky.

Service was fast.

There was no wait.

Not like, I discovered years later when those boys were teens, the answer to prayer.

Seems to me, that more and more, we live in an instant gratification society. Pull to a window and get food. Punch our phones and connect with someone across the sea. Order online and if we pay enough, by morning that item will be brown-boxed by the back door. It spoils us. Makes us discouraged when things take time.

For a while now, our family has been working through the heartache of a struggling son. My husband and I have five boys, and our hearts are full for each one. But when a single child struggles, the wound cuts deep. We've ached beside our boy. Hurt with him. Carried worry until our shoulders grow weary from the weight.

It's been years.

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