By Mardeio Cannon | OBSERVER Columnist
There may be a few of you reading this column who still don’t believe in the power of prayer. I realize that I can’t change your belief system in this short column. However, I hope to present some strong evidence to get you to gradually change your mind and come over to my side.
First, of all I believe in the power of prayer because I have seen it manifested in my life and during my lifetime, I also have witnessed firsthand the power of prayer in my family and friends.
On Jan. 2, Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin went into cardiac arrest twice after a routine tackle. According to reports, it took nine minutes of CPR by first responders to revive Hamlin before he was rushed to the hospital.
Professional football is a violent sport in which large men are tackling each other with brute force at amazing speed. In all my years watching and enjoying professional football, I have witnessed numerous serious injuries that have occurred on the field during games. However, these were broken bones or serious concussions and never came close to the loss of life on the playing field.
The injury that occurred on “Monday Night Football” was the first time in the NFL’s history that a player actually died on the field because of contact on a routine play. (Chuck Hughes, a 28-year-old Detroit Lions receiver, died of a heart attack on the field Oct. 24, 1971, near the end of a game against Chicago. Hughes had undiagnosed advanced heart disease.) Because of the immediate action of the first responders, Hamlin was revived and rushed to the hospital in very serious condition.
While in the hospital and fighting for his life, the calls for prayer went into immediate effect all over the country and on social media.
My church was among the many to call on all those who believe in the power of prayer to pray for Hamlin.
Make no mistake, Hamlin was in very serious condition fighting for his life on a ventilator and all the doctors could do was to wait it out.
Then the first report came from the doctors that Hamlin had all of his neurological functions – even though he may have been brain dead for about nine minutes.
A few days later, doctors reported Hamlin was improving!
Hamlin improved so much that he started to FaceTime teammates and his first statement was that when you give love, it comes back three times to you.
He is now discharged from the hospital to continue his recovery.
The national outpouring of prayers for Hamlin was the difference in his miraculous recovery. It also helped that Hamlin had a giving spirit that made people feel even better about him, as evidenced by the outpouring of support for his charity that is approaching $8 million.
So, in conclusion the verdict is in and the power of prayer still works! Try it sometime!