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A Relationship Seems Beyond Repair?

“If two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for in prayer, it will be done by God in Heaven.”
—Matthew 18:19

(pg. 65 – 40 DPC Book)

We have discovered that no marriage or relationship is “too far gone” to be rescued by God when two people enter into an agreement of daily prayer.

This story proves it.

Ross & Leah’s Story

We were looking forward to our lunch at the Ivy Restaurant in Santa Monica. Louise had received an email from an old friend whom she’d known from the early days on the comedy circuit, Ross Shafer, who through quite a godwink, I had also known from my days at ABC.

“I can’t believe two of my old friends met and married,” he wrote excitedly, going on to explain he too had gotten married—to a wonderful woman who was the lead praise team singer at Rick Warren’s Saddleback Church in Orange County.

And here we were, barely three weeks later, having lunch with Ross and Leah, in a beautiful setting, learning about her talents and aspirations, while catching up on a decade of Ross’ career activities.

Louise and I prattled on about our work with Baylor University and—as we tend to do with anyone standing still—began regaling them with amazing testimonies from couples whose marriages had radically improved after taking The 40 Day Prayer Challenge.

It was a wonderful visit and, before departing, we extracted a promise from Ross and Leah to visit us if they ever got to the East Coast.

As busy people do, we went right back into a state of disconnection for the next six months. That’s when Ross called and said they had a confession to make.

“Remember that lunch we had at the Ivy?” as if it was really possible we could have forgotten the delightful occasion.

“Well, we almost didn’t make it to the restaurant that day. In fact, at that time, our marriage was hanging by a thread … a perforated thread.”

Louise and I listened with dropped jaws, recalling the picture of the perfect couple sitting across from us; we had described them later as “Ken and Barbie.” Their marriage wasn’t solid?

“On the drive home that day,” said Ross, “I looked at Leah and said, ‘Well, we’ve tried everything else, why not try what SQuire and Louise are talking about.’”

“I don’t want to pray with you,” she snapped.

“Well, I don’t want to pray with you either, but nothing we’ve tried has worked.”

Louise and I were now like captivated attendees at a demolition derby.

“So, we tried it,” said Ross, giving no indication of the outcome he was about to dump on us. “For the first seven days, we prayed together … through gritted teeth.”

I glanced at Louise, listening on another phone, our looks expressing dual concern that our first failed 40 Day Prayer Challenge was about to be unveiled.

“But, by the second week,” Ross continued, “our jaws began to relax. By 14 days we began to smile at each other. And when we got to the 40th day—I have to tell you—our marriage has never been better.”

Louise and I literally didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. I think we did both—at the same time.

Leah later told us that when they got married, their relationship was “not God centered.” She said they were both struggling with careers—hers in music, his in broadcasting—and most doors were simply not opening up.

“Then, when they began focusing on Jesus, things began to improve,” she said. When they tried to have a baby they had been unsuccessful. Then, one day, without even looking for an opportunity to adopt, they were presented with a newborn baby girl.

“Lolo became the glue that helped us to stay together,” Leah smiles.

Still, the couple found themselves constantly bickering. And that was right about the time we met them for lunch at the Ivy Restaurant.

Today Lolo is nine. She’s still the glue. Not long ago she caught her parents starting to argue with each other.

“Excuse me,” Lolo’s little girl voice raised above her parents’.

“Have we prayed?”

It was a wonderful reminder—out of the mouths of babes—that everyone needed to stop everything, right then and there, and pray.

It works, every time.
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