My mother had had rheumatic fever as a child and it had damaged her heart. During my Freshman year, she became very ill with what the doctors presumed to be trouble with her heart valves. At a Stake conference, the Stake President called for a special fast for two members of the Stake. One of those was my mother. The Stake fasted for the two individuals. My mother was scheduled a short time later for open heart surgery. In the pre-op visit, it occurred to the doctor to see if her thyroid function had been checked. It had not; so he called for further testing to rule out a thyroid disorder. The diagnosis came back that she had Graves Disease. Instead of the surgery, she began treatment to suppress the over-activity of her thyroid gland. She responded well to the medications and her heart symptoms disappeared. The surgery that was scheduled was never needed. Coincidence? I think not. I firmly believe that doctor was inspired by a higher power to check out one more thing before stopping my mothers heart. She lived to be 86 despite many other autoimmune disorders and difficult medical conditions.
While we were serving a mission for our Church in Southern California, we learned we were expecting another grandchild. Of course we were overjoyed! Then we received news from our daughter that according to the sonogram, our new grandchild may be born with congenital birth defects. They ruled out Downs Syndrome, but told our daughter and her husband that the placental abnormalities meant that more testing would need to be done to see if there were birth defects. On the day of the testing, Jerry and I fasted and prayed. It was during a week of Zone Conferences. Jerry must have said many silent prayers that day, but as the Mission President, he was not able to leave the Zone Conference. At the time the test was to be done, I remember slipping out of the conference, finding a quiet room in the Church building we were at, kneeling down and pouring my heart out to my Heavenly Father. I remember assuring him that I would be prepared to love and accept any child we would be sent but asked that if it were possible, our grandchild would be born without birth defects. Before I went back into the conference, I heard from my daughter. They could find nothing wrong with her baby. There is something extra special about that creative, energetic, and very normal child.