It was late saturday evening. I just couldn't sleep. It was my wife's turn to care for her Dad. He was terminally ill and wanted no part of spending his final days in a hospital room. So a schedule was made out and each of His children would take a day caring for Dad.
It had been a while since I had made the 130 mile trip with my wife. Her care-giving day was scheduled on Sundays, which made it a little difficult for me with my Church resposibilities. But this Sunday I needed to go! Not only did my wife need my support; Dad was getting weaker and more frail by the day. We arrived by Noon and I was stunned as I witnessed a once robust, healthy man, now feeble and thin.
It was disheartening to hear him apologize repeatedly for being such a burden. His body was slowly fading, though his mind...sharp as a tack. Roles now Reversed. The man who had loved, raised and cared for this daughter now became the one being loved and cared for.
I knew then that without a miracle He was not going to be with us much longer. That Sunday evening was a rough one. Dad had fallen while trying to get to the bathroom on his own. At 4am. We were awakened by what sounded like the roof caving in. Dad being a little disoriented had mistaken the floor for the comode and down he went taking whatever he could grab with him.
We knew right then that two of us needed to be with him at all times. We managed to get him up from the floor, doctor the gash in his wrist (acquired from the fall) and put him safely back to bed.
With a new day came renewed hope. My wife asked, "Dad, what would you like for breakfast?" his reply,"Do we have any jelly beans? I know it sounds crazy but I was dreaming of jelly beans." The Lord works in mysterious ways His little wonders to perform. It just so happened that my wife had brought a brand new bag of jelly beans with her, go figure!
On Thursday next, we received a call that He was not expected to live through the night. My wife left work as did some of the other siblings as soon as they received the news.
By thursday evening all of his daughters were with him. Dad slipped into coma on friday evening. God had given Four sisters the gift of spending An entire day of lying on the bed with their Daddy, laughing, crying, hugging and just being there with him when he drew his final breath. He went peacefully to meet his maker on Saturday evening.
I was so impressed with the love and consideration that my Father-in-law had extended to his children, by making all of his own funeral plans in advance. He left no buisness undone. He honored me by requesting I deliver His funeral message. The Day of the funeral was filled with emotion; Weeping, laughter, Reminiscing and bonding. It's never easy to say goodbye to those we so dearly love. Yet surely as one is born, must he also face death, it is simply a vey real part of life.
A few days had passed and while sitting in my rocker, my three year old Grand Daughter crawled up onto my lap wanting some jelly beans and a hug. I was reminded that God is so good. As one life leaves us, the promise of new life continues through jelly beans and hugs!
PLEASE ENCOURAGE AUTHOR,
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