Just the other day I had the great fortune to go and visit one of the elderly ladies from our church. She is recuperating in a long term care facility from a hospital stay.
When Joy and I arrived at the facility, Audene and the women she sat with were asleep in their wheel chairs. I thought how sad it was to be slumped over in a chair, asleep and unaware of where you are.
Joy went over to Audene and woke her up. They shared a precious moment and verbal exchange. I felt I was intruding and turned away, tears in my eyes. The love was so evident and so strong between them, it permeated the air. Audene told Joy that she doesn’t like it when Joy isn’t there. That just tore at my heart.
As Joy and I wheeled Audene down to the chapel to read the Bible and to pray, she kept talking to Jesus. “Jesus is my Savior and I will serve Him,” she whispered. I thanked God for allowing me to be a witness to her faith as I pushed the wheelchair. I thanked Him for the opportunity to just be in the presence of these two women of God.
When we arrived in the chapel, Joy asked me to read some of the parables Audene enjoyed and would be able to remember. I read them and Joy asked Audene if she remembered them. She did. I then turned to the book of Ruth, which I had read earlier that morning. As I read, I could see Audene listening intently. I stopped for a moment and she took up where I left off and told us the entire story. The names were gone, but the story unfolded beautifully as she spoke.
We shared a time of worship and sang the chorus to “Trust and Obey” several times. Audene sang right along with us. We held hands and closed our service with the Lord’s Prayer. Audene’s voice was strong and loud. More tears filled my eyes.
As we walked down the hallway to share lunch, Audene continued to sing the words to the chorus, “trust and obey, there is no other way…”
Although Audene couldn’t remember who I was, it really wasn’t important. Audene’s mind is failing and she can’t remember things like what day it is. She does know the most important thing. She knows who her Savior is. She shares her day with Him. You know, I know Jesus was right there with us and she was seeing him through her blind eyes.
We left Audene in the hallway with several other residents. I told her how much I enjoyed the visit and held her hand. I walked away so Joy could share some time with her. Audene called after her, “I’ll see you at our home tonight.” Joy just kept walking, tears in her eyes. Joy can’t take care of Audene any longer, she has health issues herself. I put my arm around her shoulder and we walked back to the car in silence.
After I dropped Joy off at her home, I wondered to myself, when I am old and frail of mind, what will I be talking about? I pray that I will be talking to my Jesus and singing the chorus, “trust and obey, there’s no other way, than to trust and obey.”
Well written, indeed. Seldom have I read an article that left me feeling as if I were there with the writer. You "took me there" in this story. I "saw" what you saw and heard it all for myself. Well done. As for your being like Audene? He "took her there" as He will you. He is faithful. Blessings!