Faith Still Moves Mountains | Harris Faulkner

Summary of: Faith Still Moves Mountains: Miraculous Stories of the Healing Power of Prayer
By: Harris Faulkner

Introduction

Discover how faith and prayer can transform lives and have a profound impact even in the darkest times in the book summary of ‘Faith Still Moves Mountains: Miraculous Stories of the Healing Power of Prayer’ by Harris Faulkner. Dive into the powerful stories of people like Tina Zahn, who overcame severe depression thanks to the power of prayer and chaplain James O’Neill, whose faith guided him through the challenges faced by General Patton’s Third Army. The book explores themes such as hope, community, and the role of faith in overcoming adversity.

Embracing Faith Through Darkness

Joseph’s story in the Book of Genesis, where he endures years in an underground cell, reflects the despair and loneliness that people often feel during depression. Like Joseph, who ultimately regains his faith and becomes one of the twelve fathers of Israel, people struggling with depression can also find solace and strength in faith. Tina Zahn experiences this realization in her battle with postpartum depression. Through the unwavering support, prayers, and love from her community, and a miraculous rescue attempt, Tina emerges from her darkness with renewed faith and determination.

In the Book of Genesis, Joseph endures an arduous trial – over a decade imprisoned in an underground cell within the Egyptian royal court he once served. Joseph abandons his futile effort to keep track of time, and the days blur together in hopelessness, loneliness, and isolation. While we often focus on the triumphant end of Joseph’s story, in which he becomes one of the twelve fathers of Israel, it is crucial to remember his dark moments of despair that significantly contribute to his journey of faith.

Depression can feel strikingly similar to Joseph’s imprisonment – a suffocating, inescapable pit of loneliness and abandonment. Tina Zahn, a Wisconsin mom, experienced this reality even more intensely when she fell into the depths of postpartum depression. Despite previously feeling protected and watched over by God, the birth of her third child ushered in a profound sense of loneliness and desolation.

Living with her mom offered little respite from the encompassing darkness. Time became immaterial for Tina, who spent her days in a daze, questioning her lack of emotions. Her mother’s plea for her to “snap out of it” ignited an overwhelming surge of pain, depression, and an urgent desire to run. Guided by a fear-stricken voice, she drove to a 200-foot-high bridge in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

However, just as God had not forsaken Joseph in his darkest moments, He did not abandon Tina. On July 19, 2004, Tina stepped up to the edge of the Leo Frigo Memorial Bridge and jumped – but instead of plummeting to her death, a hand tightly seized her wrist.

At the onset of Tina’s suicidal intent, her mom called the police for help. State trooper Les Boldt received the call and, though protocol advised against it, went alone to intercept Tina. Arriving at the scene, Boldt’s quick actions, combined with a miraculous moment when Tina’s feet caught the lip of the barrier, allowed him to reach her and hold her in place.

For those 16 heart-stopping seconds, Boldt braced himself against the barrier, clenched to Tina as he awaited backup. Two additional officers soon joined him, gripping Tina’s limbs, and pulled her back over the barrier to safety. The successful rescue embodied both a series of fortunate events and the unwavering faith of Tina’s family and friends – countless prayers enveloping her with love, signifying their refusal to abandon her in her darkest hour. God, too, did not abandon her.

The defining moment on the bridge led Tina to become a stronger woman and an even more steadfast believer. Her life took a new direction as she emerged from her depression, and she now stands as a published author, church leader, and advocate for mental health issues, shedding light on postpartum depression.

In learning from Joseph’s and Tina’s stories, we can see that even when submerged in the depths of depression and despair, faith can be a powerful source of strength and healing. The unwavering love and support of others, manifested through prayer and selfless actions, exemplify the transformative and redemptive power of faith.

Prayer for Weather: A Turning Point

On December 8, 1944, amidst torrential rain, Chaplain James O’Neill receives a request from General Patton to create a prayer for good weather. Following this prayer, the rain ceases, allowing the Third Army to launch a crucial counterstrike that leads to Allied victory in the Battle of the Bulge and eventually World War II.

Nancy, France, December 8, 1944 – Chaplain James O’Neill gazes out his window at the old military barracks courtyard, serving as the temporary headquarters for General Patton’s Third Army. The rain persists, as it has for two months, washing away roads and hindering the progress of Patton’s forces. Time is of the essence, as the German army takes advantage of the weather to regroup and prepare a counterattack.

As the phone rings, O’Neill answers to find General Patton on the other end, asking for a prayer to change the unfavorable weather. In response, O’Neill drafts a historical prayer, requesting fair weather for battle and divine aid in crushing the enemy. Upon presenting the prayer to Patton, the general approves and signs the card that it was typed on.

Their conversation turns to prayer in the Third Army. O’Neill admits that formal prayer isn’t common among the soldiers; they primarily pray during active combat, not during idle moments. Patton then shares his beliefs on success in life, explaining that it entails planning, working, and praying. Warfare requires intricate planning and skilled soldiers to carry out the execution, but Patton believes that God plays a critical role in their victories and that prayer should not be underestimated.

Emphasizing the importance of prayer, Patton compares it to plugging into a heavenly power source. Prayer completes the circuit, granting access to divine power to those who turn to it. Inspired by Patton’s words, O’Neill crafts the final version of his prayer, and over 250,000 copies are distributed among the Third Army on December 11, 1944.

The prayer proves to be timely. On December 16, the German Army launches a massive counterattack, initiating the Battle of the Bulge. As the rain continues to impede the Allied troops, hope seems to be fading. However, on Christmas morning, a miracle occurs: the rain stops, and the fog lifts, revealing clear skies.

No one expected the change in weather, and the Third Army seizes this opportunity. With newfound air support, General Patton’s forces advance and break through the German lines on December 26, 1944, ultimately lifting the siege of Bastogne. Remarkably, the favorable weather lasts until late January, allowing the Allies to secure victory in the Battle of the Bulge on January 28, 1945. By early May, WWII ends.

O’Neill and Patton reunite one final time during the war in Luxembourg. Patton, with a smile, acknowledges the answered prayers and offers a congratulatory tap on O’Neill’s helmet as a sign of gratitude. The prayer for weather had proven to be instrumental in changing the tide of the battle and, ultimately, the course of history.

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