Polished look: Graduate paints nails, exchanges prayers

Lorelei Decker, a recent graduate of Putnam City North High School, collects “prayer polish,” nail polish given to her as she battles cancer, encouraging her to pray for the recipient and reminding her that the giver is praying for her.
by Carla Hinton Published: June 2, 2012

Compassion abounds

Andrea Decker said the nail polish idea has been a gift of sorts to her daughter and the people who care for her.

She said people don't always know what to say or how to act to show their support. Andrea Decker said the polish has helped opened the door for conversation and eased the trepidation that some people have experienced as her daughter has fought the disease.

“It gave them a reason to seek her out, to drop by here and have a conversation with her,” she said.

Andrea Decker said some people were hesitant to bring prayer requests to Lorelei because they felt their troubles paled in comparison to hers. However, Lorelei has assured friends and family that she wants to pray for them as they pray for her — no matter the circumstances.

“She wants everyone to know that if it matters to them, it matters to God,” Andrea Decker said.

Lorelei Decker said she initially struggled to empathize with others because she felt their woes were eclipsed by her fight for her life.

“Everybody else's problems seemed insignificant. I had to pray that God would give me compassion for others.”

She said the Lord answered her prayer and the gifts became more significant.

“That's something that I learned on this journey — every hurt is still a hurt no matter how small or large,” she said.

Decker said she has learned that life is all about perspective.

She is battling cancer, but she refuses to be pessimistic about it. She plans to attend Oklahoma State University in the fall, focusing on a double major of business and Spanish. Decker also hopes to serve an internship in the Oklahoma City Thunder's community relations department.

She said one of her favorite Scriptures is James 1:2-4.

“Not every day is perfect but the Lord never said everyday would be perfect. The Lord sees something about facing trials that we can't see.”

Decker said a friend recently asked her how she stayed so upbeat.

“I told her I don't have a choice whether I have cancer but I do have a choice whether I have the joy of God,” she said. “It really comes down to a decision.”

by Carla Hinton
Religion Editor
Carla Hinton, an Oklahoma City native, joined The Oklahoman in 1986 as a National Society of Newspaper Editors minority intern. She began reporting full-time for The Oklahoman two years later and has served as a beat writer covering a wide...
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