We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed, perplexed, but not driven to despair, persecuted, but not forsaken, struck down, but not destroyed…. 2 Corinthians 8-9
Some days are harder than others. I finally was able to stop today and crawl into bed mid-afternoon. I had hosted a family lunch, but was feeling incredibly tired. I may have another infection of some kind like I did in March. For several nights I had been waking up drenched and I thought it was just hot in my bedroom but I was probably running a fever. I had seen the telltale signs but I could not fit in a doctor’s appointment until today. The nurse practioner could not completely confirm what I had but did say that something was not right. I will know more next week. For now, sleep and fluids are the best healer.
This morning I got word that another person with cancer for whom I had been praying died and my friend was heading home for the burial. I had met the woman who is my goddaughter’s grandmother via Skype. She was a lovely Rwandan who like many in that region understood hospitality. She was suffering greatly these last few weeks too as the cancer had spread to her bones. I have yet to talk to my friend but I know that her faith will bring courage. Her short message after inquiring how I am holding up was simple: Just to let you know that mum has also gone to be with God this morning. Amen! I say. May her home be with God indeed.
Psalm 116 is used today: I kept my faith, even when I said, “I am greatly afflicted.” and later Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his faithful ones. Three faithful ones have become even more precious now to the Lord as they wind their way Home. They have joyfully crossed the bridge between this world and the next. We who remain with our broken hearts will eventually move forward, grateful that we have someone Beyond who can receive our prayers. We can stay afflicted, crushed, perplexed, struck down, but we will not be crushed.
Today I snuggled into my bed, and let the weariness come. I did not have to be strong. I allowed the tears to flow as they have at various points since Dad died. I miss him. This grief is complicated by a number of factors. When my sister suddenly died, the next year was filled with 12 more deaths. I see this pattern beginning again and sigh deeply. The big difference, of course, is that one of those deaths may well be my own. Oddly enough, this does not bring me to despair but hope. I know that my time here is short and I will see these precious souls again in what will seem like a twinkling of an eye. In the meantime, God keeps sending nudges. As I laid there on my bed, my cell phone tinged. A loved one was sending some encouragement. I am not alone and I will not fall into despair. Though the Evil one may try to crush, persecute and destroy me, I am trusting that God will uplift, protect and bless me. We are precious in the sight of the Lord now; we become even more so when God greets us face-to-face.
What may be crushing you right now? How will you manage?
Do you know that you are precious in the sight of the Lord even now?
Protector, wrap me in your cloak and keep me safe. You see all that is threatening to crush and destroy my sanity and health. I give it all to you, Coach, as you cheer me on this challenging path. I remember too well the sorrows of years gone by but now I know anew that Heaven is my Home and I will keep my eyes on that prize. Grant me peace, courage and hope. Amen.