Saturday, March 3, 2012

Believing in the Power of Prayer

Praying can become a routine. We do it, and it may be automatic, without much thought or sincerity. Every once in a while I get reminded just how important it is to take the power of prayer seriously. I had one such reminder yesterday morning.

As I was driving to Arizona to visit with my children and other family members, I regained a profound respect for black ice. I was about 35 miles south of Page, AZ, on a two-lane highway. I saw the black ice and slowed from the speed limit of 65 down to about 35 mph. That wasn't enough. I lost traction and slid into the left lane, going the opposite direction... right in front of an oncoming car. I tried steering and correcting (I know how to recover from a loss of traction), but was having no luck. The other car was approaching.

Before I left my home in Utah, I prayed for safety. And I did pray sincerely, because I knew I was driving into a snow storm. At one point on Interstate 15 in the middle of the night, where the speed limit was 80 mph, I could only go about 30 to feel safe. When I finally arrived at my sister Shelly's home in Gilbert, AZ, Friday afternoon, I told her about this incident. Afterward, she told me she had also prayed for my safety. Perhaps there were others who did, too, such as my sweet wife.

Back to the drama... I saw the other car approaching, and I had no control of my own car. So I uttered aloud a quick prayer... I simply said, "Father..." Suddenly I regained enough traction to swerve back into my own lane. I only had about another 1-1/2 seconds before I would have been in a head-on collision. It probably would not have been fatal at the speed I was going, but certainly there would have been injuries, and two destroyed vehicles.

As I regained control of the vehicle, and my own composure, I asked myself, "Did that really just happen?"

I attribute the fact that I was not in a major auto accident to a direct answer to prayer. Sincere prayer. Not just the one uttered in the moment of distress, but also to those said in sincerity before the circumstances arose.

It is times like this that my faith is strengthened. I am thankful to a loving Heavenly Father, and loving family, who care about my safety. I don't know where I would be without them.