MANNA FROM MY FATHER’S HAND # 2
So, about my father…. Yes, he was elderly (88 when all this began), but in good physical shape. We, his family members had been telling him for years about Jesus (sometimes in a bit more of a pushy way, that just seemed to push him AWAY, sadly). It’s hard to say if he had a true faith, or how deep it was. He was of the generation that thought it was not in good taste to talk of “religion” (wow did that attitude help our culture start down a slippery slope!) or politics (but he spoke of these things a bit more often, especially politics, as he got older).
After his original event where he was found on the floor, and we suspected he had GBS, it looked like he’d never walk independently again, that some of his other bodily functions would never recover, etc.–especially if his original diagnosis had been correct (for which there would not have been much regaining of muscle use in his legs, etc.) Sometimes with GBS, you can recover over time to some extent, but this is not what his medical professionals diagnosed as his condition.
But God was so gracious to him. (Helps to have many daughters pleading your case before the Throne of Grace I suppose….)
A Christian Caregiver
He lived several hours away from us all, alone, and of course wanted to return home. So his option in that case was to have a live-in caregiver. As the Lord would arrange it (“coincidentally”), somehow my sister and her husband found a caregiver that was a CHRISTIAN! Praise the Lord. Our Dad was a bit eccentric to say the least, but a very interesting and gifted/talented man. He was also not the nicest person to be around.
So, over the next year or so, there were many times when his caregiver didn’t know if she could stay, because sometimes he was just outright mean to her. But by the grace of God, she did … and the impact of her sacrifice to stay with him when all within her probably screamed to get out of that situation, may well have had eternal implications for our father. Only Jesus knows for sure. It is my hope that in his heart, he surrendered to the still small voice of our Savior in the end.
A Music Filled Ministry
What I do know is that she (as a Christian) loved my music, and would play my CDs (among others) for my Dad at night, apparently blasting one of them on His powerful music system. When I originally put out my first independent CD (Fill This Temple) years ago, he had told me how he loved to listen to the beautiful music and my voice, even though he didn’t necessarily agree with the Lyrics.
Now, after whatever transpired due to Covid/shot/hospital stay, etc., with this Christian woman literally (from my perspective at least) being the “hands and feet of Christ” in his life, who faithfully put that CD on for him to listen to every night, he began to be INCREDIBLY complimentary when he and I would speak together.
Mind you, this man tended to be VERY critical, and it was a sweet but shocking thing when we’d talk on the phone and he would gush about how he LOVED the music, etc. He was getting a bit forgetful and confused with age, and then probably from all that had transpired, but his encouraging words persisted.
Now, I had thought I’d never get to see him again, because he was TERRIBLY afraid of Covid, and with my stubborn resistance to getting the shots, I just figured I’d never have that blessing of seeing him in person again. We would write letters back and forth, and call, and hearing his words of encouragement are things I’ll treasure for the rest of my life.
In exploring back on his life over these past couple of years, I was surprised that he had actually gotten a Pfizer shot somewhere in that ensuing year, and although there may have been a couple of things that might have been related, he largely did fine. (So fine, that I never even knew he had gotten that shot, and would have been flummoxed as to why he would agree to get another one when the first potentially had been the reason he landed in the condition in which he now found himself)….
Regaining His Strength from His Caregiver’s Kindness
But who knows? He took it. Thankfully, his life continued on…. And, his strength and abilities gradually improved, so much so that he began to want to live independently again in more recent months.
And for those many months, his gracious care-giver continued to lay her life down to her Lord every day. And by Jesus’ amazing grace, he listened and loved the music. Surely, in all that listening, the lyrics had to sink in to his heart. All about Jesus….
I am forever grateful that the Lord allowed our Dad to have this living example of the Love of Christ living with him daily, and that the Lord was faithful in restoring some of what he had lost, AND using this horrendous situation in our society to work something good in his life, (at least from my perspective) spiritually.
That’s enough for now…. To be continued….