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Developmentally Disabled Son Recognizes His Mother in Answer to Prayer

Chicago-area pastor Lee Eclov tells the following story about a woman named Cathy who had a profoundly developmentally disabled son.

When Nicholas was eight or nine years old [Eclov writes], Cathy came to me and asked if the elders of our church would anoint and pray for Nicholas in keeping with James 5:14-16. Cathy said she wasn't thinking that God might heal all Nicholas's disabilities, but she simply felt that God wanted her to have the elders pray for him. She didn't know why. So one Sunday she brought him to church in a wheelchair and after the service we met in my office, anointed Nicholas with oil, and prayed for him.
When Cathy called me that night all those years later Nicholas was now 25 years old. Every week for 25 years Cathy had visited him. In all those visits Nicholas never communicated with her except for laughing sometimes as she entered the room. It seemed that nothing ever changed.
Cathy had just had her annual consultation with the team of professionals who care for Nicholas. In the course of that meeting the speech therapist said, "I think Nicholas is making some progress. We've been using green and red cards for "yes" and "no." He is learning to point at the right card in answer to some questions. Would you like to see?" "Of course," Cathy replied, her heart pounding. So they went to Nicholas's room.
The therapist held up the green and red cards, and asked, "Nicholas, is your mom with us today?" And Nicholas pointed at the green card. Cathy could hardly believe it. Other questions convinced her that it wasn't an accident; he really understood.
She called me in tears to tell me her good news. "All these years I'd visit him," she said, "and I never knew if he even knew who I was. And now I know. He knows I'm his mother. And he is excited to see me." Then Cathy asked, "Do you remember when the elders prayed for Nicholas? This is God's answer." Guess what I think about now when someone asks our elders to pray for them?

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