Sherry Hopkins letter

Published 12:00 am Friday, October 12, 2007

Get the picture? by Sherry Hopkins

Answer to intercessory prayer for daughter bolsters belief in miracles

I was born a skeptic, a cynic, and a doubting Thomas.

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“Prove it,” I would challenge anyone and everyone. I should have been born in Missouri because I need someone to “show me” everything. Therefore, had I not witnessed the following story I would not believe it myself.

But this story is not about me. It is a story about God and His mercy, faith and the power of prayer. It is a true story and an amazing miracle.

This past week was the thirty-third anniversary of my daughter’s death. After so much time has passed I try to focus solely on positive uplifting things about her short life on this earth.

When Dana was about three or so she developed severe kidney problems. We were referred to a nephrologist, a doctor specializing in diseases of the kidney. After many tests and examinations, I was told that her left kidney was no longer functioning, and it was in fact, atrophied or shrinking. The diagnosis was to remove the bad kidney and hope for the best with the remaining one. The right kidney did function but not at its optimum. The prognosis seemed bleak at this point for Dana.

Dana’s paternal grandmother was a faithful Christian and belonged to a small neighborhood church. At the first service following Dana’s diagnosis, Memaw took the news to her church. They had never met Dana or anyone else in our family, but that night they decided to begin a prayer chain and to also have someone at the church around the clock praying for Dana’s recovery.  Dana was supposed to have the operation to remove the kidney in a week. This small gathering of faithful people prayed continuously for my daughter. My mother in law told me what was occurring at the little church. I was grateful but had no expectations.

The church members continued to pray around the clock and as word traveled outside our community others began to pray as well. For a solid week many, many faithful believers in God and His word prayed, fervently and without ceasing. Not one of those people had ever met my daughter. But they prayed on.

The day of surgery finally arrived and we checked into the hospital very early in the morning to prep. The doctor arrived shortly after Dana and me.  He said that he had requested one last x-ray to “just confirm” the operation plans. They wheeled my drowsy child down to the x-ray department and took several pictures. We went back to the room to await the beginning of the surgery.

Several hours passed, as did the scheduled surgery time. I asked questions but no one seemed to have any answers. Finally just after lunch Dana’s doctor came into the room. He sat down and hung his head for a moment. I expected the worse. He finally looked at me and began to explain the following. X-rays were taken of the diseased left kidney and of the right kidney. Then they took more pictures. They called in more doctors. They could not believe or explain what they were seeing. According to the x-ray both kidneys were normal and functioning.

The doctor with tears in his eyes said, ” I believe in God and I believe in miracles, but this is the first one I have ever witnessed.” I immediately thought back to the countless numbers of people who were lifting up intercessory prayers on behalf of my daughter. It had worked. They had prayed and God had heard and she was whole again.

The doctors needed to test her further and performed an IVP test, which confirmed inconclusively that her kidneys were indeed functioning, as they should.

When the people that had prayed heard the news they were not surprised as the doctors and I were. They had been faithful and had expected the outcome we all witnessed. It was not only a life changing moment in my daughters’ life but in mine as well. It is the only miracle I have seen in my life, but I always expect to see more some day. You get the picture?

(Contact Sherry at