Interceding often feels like carrying the burdens of others. May was a rollercoaster month.
On the evening of May 11, my mother-in-law’s birthday, my sister-in-law called to tell me that her daughter, who was then 10 weeks pregnant, was hit by a semi on her way home from work and that the jaws of life were needed to extract her from the vehicle before she was flown two hours from her home in North Dakota to a hospital in Grand Forks. A picture taken at the scene of the accident brought tears to our eyes, and we knew without a doubt that God had spared her life. Her surgeries went well and after 20 days, she returned home. This whole situation has been extremely painful physically and emotionally for her. Through it all, her baby is doing fine; thank you, God.
On Saturday, May 13, our second son graduated summa cum laude from college. We were proud and had a pleasant day. On the way home, about 4:30 p.m., my mother-in-law texted us to tell us that her husband was having emergency surgery at a VA Hospital an hour from her home. We had a lot of questions so called her to learn the details, which included that he had been in pain all night, and she had taken him to the ER extremely early that morning. While we had our niece on our minds and hearts all day, we had also had a joyful day celebrating with our son. Now, our emotions plummeted in the opposite direction as my fingers flew sending out texts to my sons to pray also for their stepgrandfather.
Daily communication occurred to keep track of progress from the different surgeries. When Grandpa came home from the hospital late that Wednesday, we were all relieved and planned our visit. Originally, we were going to have a cookout at our house to celebrate my mother-in-law’s birthday and our son’s graduation, but since Grandpa was just home from the hospital, a simple visit to their house was better. Thursday, May 18, came, however, and Grandpa died that evening of apparent heart failure. Now our Saturday visit went from celebration to mourning. I baked up some different shortbreads and a pan of lasagna and some buns, and we headed over to comfort Grandma and her husband’s children. We celebrated Grandpa’s life at the visitation and funeral, the next Wednesday and Thursday, one week after his passing, two weeks after the accident.
Before all this started, on May 8, I had learned that a childhood friend had been in the hospital with blood clots which had resulted from a medicine she was taking to clear up another medical problem. Because of a hectic schedule, I didn’t get to call her until Sunday, May 14. I went to visit her on May 16. Although it had been years, it felt like we had never been parted. It was a lovely visit. By Saturday though, she was en route to the hospital via the ambulance for another medical scare. What with all that was going on, I didn’t call her, but shot her a quick message on Facebook.
Although life may feel overwhelming, I have peace that God is in control and has this all figured out.
Often I feel helpless. There is so much pain, and I cannot do anything to alleviate it. There seems so much to do, yet I’m not the one to do certain tasks. I do what I can and pray often. If I think of all that I haven’t done or couldn’t do, I feel sad. Very sad. Yet I try to remember that sometimes even our tiniest efforts have a big impact if for nothing else that we exhibited that we care. Maybe I just gave a hug. Maybe I just listened. Maybe I talked too much and said something silly, but that something silly caused someone to laugh. Did I say the right thing? Did I do enough? Do flowers or notes really help someone who is hurting? Does food really offer comfort? Does anything make a difference or help?
I can only do my best and let Jesus take care of the rest. I’m not perfect, but I know the One who is.
Do you ever struggle with such emotions? Intercession is powerful because God is powerful. We may never know why certain things happen because we don’t get to see the big picture. I don’t have all the answers or even know how to proceed, but God does. I’ll continue praying even when the weight gets heavy, and I am tired. For when I am weak, I know, God is strong, and He’s got us all covered no matter what is going on.