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GRAHAM: The whole country saw a testament to the power of prayer
Patrick Graham
Patrick Graham

The whole country, the whole world, really, just witnessed a true testimony to the power of prayer.

I haven’t watched an NFL football game in, honestly, I don’t know how long. So I didn’t see Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin collapse on the field after making a tackle in last week’s Monday night football game. I switched over to the coverage after getting ESPN notifications on my phone.

I learned Hamlin had suffered a heart attack, right there in the middle of the game, in front of a stadium full of fans and millions more who were watching live all across the country.

Friends of mine who did see it live said it was one of the most frightening things they had ever seen. The collapse. The attempts to resuscitate. The ambulance being brought out. The distraught faces of Bills players and their opponents, the Cincinnati Bengals. All unsure of what exactly was happening or if their friend and colleague was going to be OK.

So they did the only thing they could do to help: they knelt and began to pray. Fervently. For protection and healing. It was a powerful sight.

Almost instantly Hamlin became a local sports and human interest story everywhere because so many were invested in the young man’s recovery. And we all did the only thing we could do to help. We prayed. Fervently. There weren’t millions watching the power of prayer now. There were millions joining in.

ESPN even had sports anchors leading prayer on set. Even the morally-bankrupt Walt Disney Co. couldn’t keep its employees from being a part of the effort to help Hamlin recover.

And in what has to be considered a bona fide miracle, Hamlin is indeed on the road to recovery. After needing nine minutes of CPR to get Hamlin breathing and his heart beating again that fateful Monday night, Hamlin, as of Friday, was reportedly awake, alert and talking to his family and medical team.

I’m sure there are some reading this that are going to attribute Hamlin’s positive turn to the quick actions of the medical staff at the stadium. The skill of the doctors and nurses who have treated Hamlin at the hospital. There are probably many others I’m leaving out who should be included as well.

All deserve credit, to be sure.

But the God-given talent of those who have played a role in Hamlin’s improvement doesn’t negate God’s grace being at work and on full display for all to see, or the power of all those prayers.

 The two don’t have to be mutually exclusive. At least not in my mind.

I’m going to continue to pray Hamlin and his family are blessed with a positive outcome.

Because I think it can help. How about you?

Patrick Graham is owner of The Covington News. His email address is