Welcome! Can you share a little bit about Prayers for Hope and Healing and who will benefit from it?
Prayers for Hope and Healing is a devotional gift book with a heavy emphasis on prayer. It connects readers with God as they go through health challenges, offering specific prayers for the most common emotions and situations readers may face.
Anyone facing illness, injury, or chronic pain will benefit from the book, as well as those who are close to someone suffering. It speaks to people in both short-term and long-term health struggles, whether they are hospitalized or at home.
One thing that’s unique about this book is the way it’s structured, with prayers you can turn to in a particular moment of need. What types of topics are covered in the Table of Contents?
As someone goes through illness, they face challenges not just physically, but in many other aspects of life. Prayers for Hope and Healing offers 44 devotions that address specific struggles in the areas of emotions, physical needs, faith questions, relationships, and situations such as surgery and hospitalization.
Chapter titles include things like: When There’s No End in Sight, When You Feel Weak, When Your Life Feels Out of Control, When You’re Lonely, and When You’re Scared of the Unknown.
What personal experiences prompted you to write the book?
Prayers for Hope and Healing was borne out of my own journey with illness. As a young girl, I watched my sister battle Stage 4 non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and beat it. But it wasn’t until I was an adult that I fully understood the breadth of emotions that accompany a medical struggle. After complications from childbirth sent me into long-term disability, I found myself battling fear and questions of why God would allow me to suffer.
I remember one particular doctor appointment that held my future in its hands. I was scared that the answer wouldn’t be what I hoped, and God turned my attention to a passage of Scripture that spoke directly to my fear.
After being healed of my condition, I spent days on end in a hospital room with my sister while she waited for a heart transplant. Pastors would come, read from the Bible, pray, and then go on their way. While offering great comfort and hope on a general level, they couldn’t be present to see the daily ins and outs of my sister’s condition or the deeper emotions she battled under the surface.
These experiences prompted me to create a prayer manual that gives readers a safe outlet of prayer for the specific scenarios they may face and connects them to God right where they are.
What books on prayer have impacted you or shaped the way you wrote the prayers in this book?
The Papa Prayer by Larry Crabb is one of the most transformational books I’ve read on prayer. It greatly impacted how I wrote Prayers for Hope and Healing.
When we go through intense trials, the typical Christian answers and rote prayers don’t always address the questions deep down inside. As I wrote the prayers in this book, I wanted to allow readers to be fully honest with God about their struggle. The prayers then look to Scripture and what it reveals about God’s character and ultimately ask Him to bridge the gap between their struggle and who God is.
Some of us may not be going through a health struggle ourselves but know someone who is. What would you say to those who want to support a friend or family member but don’t know exactly how?
The most important thing is to stay present and listen. Wherever they need practical help, like meals delivered or children cared for, jump in and help. If they need someone to keep them company, visit them and allow them to talk without interruption.
Supporting someone doesn’t always have to involve expensive, time-consuming efforts. A simple text with a typed-out prayer can make a huge difference in letting them know you care.
If you could say one thing to a person going through health struggles right now, what would it be?
Remember you’re not alone, and keep holding on. God longs for you to burrow into His side and lean into His Big Papa strength.
About the Author
Sarah Forgrave is an author and wellness coach who loves encouraging others in their health and faith journeys. In addition to her book, Prayers for Hope and Healing, her writing credits include contributions to The Gift of Friendship, Guideposts’ A Cup of Christmas Cheer, and the webzine Ungrind. When she’s not writing or teaching, she loves to shop at Trader Joe’s or spend time with her husband and two children in their Midwest home. Visit Sarah at www.sarahforgrave.com, or at the following sites:
About the Book
Prayers for Hope and Healing: Seeking God’s Strength as You Face Health Challenges
Harvest House Publishers
October 1, 2017
Amid Pain and Weakness…There Is HOPE
Serious or chronic medical issues bring a litany of painful and confusing feelings that only someone else who’s been in a similar situation could possibly understand. Sarah Forgrave has walked the difficult road you find yourself on. And she empathizes with the uncertain future you face.
No matter the road ahead, you don’t have to face it alone. Even in the depths of your worst emotional and physical pain, God is right there beside you, offering His comfort, love, and peace.
As you read these heartfelt prayers and devotions, let this book be your manual to help navigate the difficult set of emotions that come with health issues. Read it front to back or go directly to the devotion addressing how you feel at any given moment…when you need it the most.
Above all, know that you are never, ever alone.
“The verses, thoughts, and prayers in this book are a balm for the soul.” —Amelia Rhodes, author of Pray A to Z: A Practical Guide to Pray for Your Community
“Now that I find myself in a fight against stage 4 lymphoma, I realize what a gift Sarah Forgrave has given us all. This is a book that will help you pray in the midst of struggle and crisis when you thought no more prayers were left. ” —Dave Butts, president of Harvest Prayer Ministries and former chair of America’s National Prayer Committee
“This book is real and honest and points us to the One who has the answers and true healing.” —Andrew M. Cougill, MD