In a study put out by the presidential prayer team,* an impressive 45 percent of Americans claim they pray daily. But considering that 100 percent of people deal with life struggles, it could be that some people are unaware of, or resistant to, the power of prayer in finding one’s way in times of serious trauma.
If anyone knows about hardship, it’s author Patti Davis. In her new book, Hard Pressed but Not Crushed, she chronicles her story of childhood abuse; two failed marriages to the same man who couldn’t give up his addictions; single parenthood; a rare form of stage 3 breast cancer; a near-fatal auto accident that left her with ongoing chronic pain and a brain injury; and unexpected homelessness at age fifty-three.
But in spite of that impressive list of hardships, one would be hard pressed to find someone with more joy and peace. Her secret? It’s no secret at all. Patti keeps her focus on Jesus and trusts God with all things.
“If you need a Biblical example of someone who endured his sorrows,” the author says, “it would be Joseph. He’s an example of someone who learned valuable life-sustaining lessons in the school of sorrow. He didn’t fret over his uncertain hour of future relief but instead accepted each obstacle and called on his God to help him cope.
“And when God delivered him out of a certain sorrow, Joseph found himself in a new place of higher service. He’s an example of a man who let grace be sufficient as he coped with grave disappointments.”
“Grave disappointments” would be an understatement, both in describing Joseph’s life circumstances and Patti’s. With so many trials working their way into her life, how has Patti found the endurance to press forward?
“I asked God to improve my capabilities of resilience, humility, and trust, and enlarge my perspective. Satan has tried on more occasions than I can count to target my faith. I’m here to testify that nothing can keep us from God’s plans for our life—when God’s time is right. I can’t let Satan steal my tomorrow out of God’s hands. I must give God enough time to talk to me and reveal His will to me.”
Her book is truly inspiring. And for those who may have given up on prayer, feeling that they haven’t been answered, Patti encourages them to keep giving their petitions to God.