Few would disagree that the trials of John McCain have been beyond what most of us could endure.
As we lift our hearts in prayer for him, I was moved by this account, from 2008, when he described for TIME magazine the importance of his Christian faith, beginning with his years in a Hanoi prison:
On Christmas Day, I was standing in the dirt courtyard when I saw [the] guard approach me. He walked up and stood silently next to me, not looking or smiling at me. Then he used his sandaled foot to draw a cross in the dirt. We stood wordlessly looking at the cross, remembering the true light of Christmas, even in the darkness of a Vietnamese prison camp. This guard was my Good Samaritan. I will never forget that fellow Christian, and I will never forget that moment. I will always remember as well the Christmas services that my fellow prisoners and I held in a cell, when I gave thanks to God for the blessings he had granted me with the company of men I had come to admire and love. In the life of our country, faith serves the same ends that it can serve in the life of each believer, whatever creed we might profess. It sees us through life’s trials. It instills humility, calling us to serve a cause greater than ourselves. At its best, faith reminds us of our common humanity and our essential equality by the measure that matters most. A living faith calls us as well to care for the most vulnerable members of society. The poor, the hungry, the stranger seeking shelter and the child waiting to be born — all are in need of our compassion and protection. Faith shows us that the weak and defenseless are not a problem but rather a priority, and a chance for us to live out the message of the Gospels.
For John McCain, and all those who love him, let us pray to the Lord…