Muriel opened the window curtains in the hospital room. The rain that had been pouring all night had stopped. The sky was still grey but the clouds were touched by the rosy brightness of dawn. The day seemed to hold a promise. She closed her eyes and silently prayed and claimed that promise for her daughter, Gabrielle, as she lay in a deep coma. Maybe today the spell would break and she would open her eyes.
Muriel went back to her seat by the bed. She took her child’s limp hand in her own, bowed her head and prayed. Since cancer had claimed her husband a few years ago, Gabrielle, a happy, loving teenager has been her source of comfort and joy. And then one morning she had come skipping down the stairs, had tripped on the sleeping cat and crashed head on into the banister. There was no blood or broken bones, no scream of pain. She had just slipped into unconsciousness. It was nearly a month and the coma persisted.
The doctors did not give much hope. The only chance was for Muriel to keep talking to her and be able to arouse her. As a single mother Muriel had to keep working. She worked the days and spent the evenings and nights at the hospital. She would talk with Gabrielle about their cat and their garden, about the happy days they had spent walking in the parks, about picnics and camping. She would tell her about the church and her friends. She would read the Bible and sing songs especially her favorite
‘In His time, In His time, He makes all things beautiful …’
She walked over to the side table to get her Bible and daily devotions so that she could read them aloud to Gabrielle. As she searched for her glasses she was stopped by the sound of singing. She looked around to see where the sound of music was coming from and could not find any one. She came to the bed and laid the books down. She looked at the face of her child so peaceful, so beautiful and so serene. She bent down and straightened her curls and kissed her forehead. She sat down and picked up the Bible to read. Again she heard a faint humming. She wondered if it was her imagination for she had been singing that particular song so many times that it must be engraved in her subconscious mind. She went back to reading.
She heard the humming one more time, with a few mumbled words in between. With a start she realized that it was Gabrielle humming. Her heart bounding Muriel joined in the song. Bit by bit, faltering and hesitating Gabrielle sang the whole chorus:
“In His time, In His time, He makes all things beautiful in His time
Lord, please show me ev’ry day, as you’re teaching me your way
That you do just what you say in your time
In Your time, in your time you make all things beautiful in you
Lord, my life to you I bring, may each song I have to sing
Be to you a lovely thing, in your time.”
There was a faint smile on Gabrielle’s face. With a quivering hand Muriel reached for the calling bell to summon the nurse.
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