Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: BEAT AROUND THE BUSH (05/25/17)
TITLE: DE-NILE (isn't just a river in Egypt)
By Janet Murphy
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What was it that the hospital chaplain had said to us? This was sacred time. And with that statement, I felt as though I stepped into the processional line of a high, holy ceremony. But I didn’t know the sequence of the ceremony or my part, so I was anything but graceful.
The “last day at home” breakfast around the kitchen table was a first for all of us. Not because we hadn’t had a zillion meals together at that table spanning 40 years; but because we all knew that when we got up from the table this time, the family dynamic would be eternally changed.
Maybe it’s true with any married couple, but in addition to blind, love can be deaf or hard of hearing. As Dad’s sole care giver, Mom’s suggestions would sometimes fall on deaf ears. We were carefully choosing our words as not to further shine the spotlight on what Dad could no longer do. So I was the one, while lying across Dad’s bed, holding his hand, talking with him that pointed out the elephant in the room. No beating around the bush; we were concerned about his breathing and we should probably go to the hospital to check it out. I was prepared for a comeback but Dad just patted my hand and said yes. Of course that meant he had to shave, comb his hair and splash the Old Spice first.
Dad never got to go home again. The ravages of disease slowly put him into a sleep but mom and I talked to him and held his hand while we could. It’s been twelve years this month since Dad went to his reward. I love that I can still hear his voice in my ear and that I can put his last birthday card to me on my desk the entire month of June each year.
I don’t know, but I would like to think, that God in His great love and infinite mercy is gently speaking to us as we leave our home for the last time. That with each labored breath that takes us from our earthly sanctuary, He is saying, “Just wait until you see what I have for you in Glory.” Until I hear Him whisper that in my ear, I am steadfast in my joy, 1 Corinthians 15:55:
“But let me tell you something wonderful, a mystery I’ll probably never fully understand. We’re not all going to die—but we are all going to be changed. You hear a blast to end all blasts from a trumpet, and in the time that you look up and blink your eyes—it’s over. On signal from that trumpet from heaven, the dead will be up and out of their graves, beyond the reach of death, never to die again. At the same moment and in the same way, we’ll all be changed. In the resurrection scheme of things, this has to happen: everything perishable taken off the shelves and replaced by the imperishable, this mortal replaced by the immortal. Then the saying will come true: Death swallowed by triumphant Life! Who got the last word, oh, Death? Oh, Death, who’s afraid of you now? It was sin that made death so frightening and law-code guilt that gave sin its leverage, its destructive power. But now in a single victorious stroke of Life, all three—sin, guilt, death—are gone, the gift of our Master, Jesus Christ. Thank God!” The Message
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