According to an old military saying, “There are no atheists in foxholes.” It is the same for a father with a sick child.
To explain I thought I would share this amazing story of a Russian father Valery Seryakov who had his own foxhole experience at the height of Communist rule.
Valery writes in his own words:
“I joined the Communist Party according to my convictions, not for appearances’ sake or for career. I really believed in Marxism-Leninism, in the victory of Communism throughout the globe and a brighter tomorrow for mankind. And I worked conscientiously everywhere to speed up the coming of a brighter future—I am speaking without any pomp.
One day my little daughter got sick. It seemed to be an ordinary cold. So we didn’t take her to a doctor, choosing to use folk methods of treatment. But towards the night of the third day her temperature rose to forty degrees C. (104°F.). We gave her fever reducer, rubbed her with vodka—and all for nothing. We ran for a paediatrician, who lived close by.
He came and gave her an injection. We were waiting. The doctor took her temperature. It was about forty degrees C. He gave her another shot, but with no result. Half an hour later her temperature was 40.5°C. (104.9°F.).
The temperature kept rising. It was already forty-one degrees C. (105.8°F.), and my daughter was unconscious! As I looked at her, I realized that she was dying, and I was powerless to help her.
I ran out into the adjoining room, came up to the window, leaned my head against the glass, looking outside but seeing nothing. The only thought I had in my mind was: ‘What should I do? What should I do?’ I was used to solving all problems myself and was convinced that everything in life was in my hands. But it turned out that the most important thing didn’t depend on me.
And I understood that all my convictions, the ideals I served, for which (as it seemed) I lived and laboured, were worthless. My daughter was dying; and even if Communism were to win throughout the globe and the universal happiness of mankind were to come the next day, it would mean nothing to me.
If I had taken her to the hospital, the situation would probably have been different. But now no one and nothing could change anything. And it suddenly occurred to me: If God exists, everything is possible to Him. And I cried out to Him in my utter despair, ‘Lord, if You exist, save my dear daughter!!!’
“A few minutes later the paediatrician entered my room and said: ‘The temperature seems to be dropping.’ Not only had it dropped—it went back to normal 36.6°C. (97.88°F.) and didn’t rise again. In the morning my daughter was already watching cartoons and eating with gusto, without a single cough. As if she hadn’t been sick.
“I would be lying to you if I said that from that point I changed drastically, reformed and became a different person. But I did come to understand that God exists; and since there is God, you can’t live as if He doesn’t exist… And if you are a believer, there are things you shouldn’t do and words you shouldn’t say. I cannot always hold myself back, but I try. Whenever I lose my temper, I check my impulse just in time and ask Him, ‘Lord, forgive me!’”
Valery Seryakov’s story is very inspiring. I believe Albert Einstein was right when he said,
“There are two ways to live: you can live as if nothing is a miracle; you can live as if everything is a miracle”.
I have told the story before of how Dads4Kids came into existence.
It was the words of a humble indigenous pastor, Ronnie Williams who gave the inspiration to the beginning of Dads4Kids. He died in 2003, the year after we started.
Without his inspirational faith, Dads4Kids would not be inspiring you to be a good dad. It’s that simple.
You might feel that God does not exist.
All I ask is you honour our indigenous brother’s memory and allow Dads4Kids and Valery Seryakov the privilege of being that ‘atheist in the fox hole’.
How about the 70-year-old woman who was pushed to the ground and pepper-sprayed by the police. It is not only that, but the pernicious way authoritarian Governments are mandating Vaccine Passports, which is taking away peoples’ sacred right to work and dividing whole communities and families.
It feels like the whole country is in a foxhole.
If people want to have a vaccine after informed consent, so be it. But please don’t force it upon people whose conscience does not allow such a process.
It really is a new form of medical apartheid and for what good reason? In some of the most vaccinated countries of the world like Israel, it is the vaccinated that are filling the hospitals and mortuaries.
I have not got the answers and that’s why I will take inspiration from Ps Ronnie Williams and desperate father Valery Seryakovs with his sick child to pray. (See my PS for details.)
All the best and have a great week!
Yours for our Families,
PS: Our fellow friends at the Canberra Declaration who have been great supporters of Dads4Kids have called a month of prayer & fasting for family and nation in October. If you feel so inclined, we encourage you to join them. Our children and our families need prayer at this time as does our nation. As Albert Einstein said, “When the solution is simple, God is answering.”
Image by Frans Van Heerden on Pexels.