See the person in front of you

Sitting next to Frank in a hospital bed was a foreign thought for the first 20 years of our marriage.  The scene has unfortunately become more "normal" during the past fourteen.  Our most recent hospital stint came with such turmoil and borderline unimaginable angst.

After many miserable days of insomnia, perpetual movement and much craziness, understandably the first goal for Frank's care was simply allow his body to rest... literally sleep.

Reclining in the stiff chair, my little corner of the room was dimly lit by the gloomy drizzle that pelted again the window with the occasional clap of thunder.  He was finally asleep, and I was wrapped up in a fluffy soft blanket my friend had dropped off.  My thoughts... then my eyes turned to the purple journal and the big pink Bible peeking out of my stuffed bag.  Breakfast had already been delivered and the tray retrieved, so I knew the time would likely be quiet.  

He was resting... still, even peaceful, after such seeming days of chaos.  So I wrote..

Good morning, Father.
Being reminded this morning of Your great love.  
Sitting in room 444 with Frank.  
Thank you bringing him rest... 
for sustaining us through the past few days.
I will, with Your help (figure out out to) boast all the more gladly about my/our weaknesses, 
so that Christ's power may rest on us....
Would you bring answers for us..

Just then, the door opened - my hope -  it would a quick check of vitals and then the quiet would again envelop our dim room.  As she whispered her introduction and began her tasks, we were struck by the startling illumination of the room and the immediate follow of the booming greeting of a grumbling thunder rattling our bones!  We both about jumped out of our skin!!   Some storm, we agreed - sure took us by surprise.  She walked out to gather some supplies promising to return in a moment.  HE didn't speak out loud, but the Lord sure spoke to my heart clearly, "Ask T______ about the storm in her life?"  My response was raw and honest... I'm pretty much having my own thunderous storm right now... and that's about all I can handle for the moment.  I'd prefer to just continue writing my prayer right here in own little journal in my own little corner.

She walked back in, and against my will, I muttered, "That was some crazy thunder and lightning earlier.  How about you?  Any storms happening in your life?"

Her words came with little hesitation;  her tears followed with even less hesitation.    She shared of some really hard circumstances in her life.  I asked if I could pray with her - and she was so appreciative.  Moments later an orderly came to take Frank for an additional test.  We thought he had been so sound asleep.  As they wheeled him out of the room, he turned to her and said, "You are a beautiful daughter of the King - just like I've always told my own daughters, you deserve to be treated like a princess.  Listen to my wife, she's giving you wise advice."

T____ and I giggled as he was whisked away.  She shared more of her story and her walk with Jesus. Her words were tender, "I just needed someone to hear me - I prayed for a friend this morning... and here you are."  

I didn't tell her how strongly I didn't want to ask about her storm.  She was simply right there in front of me.  Who will be in front of you... and me... tomorrow.  

Get ready today:

“Share each other's troubles and problems, and in this way obey the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:2 NLT)