When the phone rang, we felt a cold chill.
.My wife talks with her mom nightly, but when her mom called at 8:30 one Sunday morning, we knew something was amiss.
My father-in-law had fallen several months before and broken his hip. Surgery followed, along with several weeks of rehab. And all of this during a surge in Covid cases in our area—including the rehab center where he spent a few weeks. He missed being home, and my mother-in-law missed him being there. More than sixty years of marriage had cemented their love.
After weeks of rehab, therapy, and home health care, the doctor finally released him. And best of all, he could drive again. But that only lasted a few days.
“The ambulance is pulling out of the driveway with your daddy,” my mother-in-law said as my wife answered the phone. “When I checked on him this morning, he was green and gasping for air.”
We feared a heart attack since his pacemaker idled at one hundred percent. We also feared Covid. What had been a nagging cough when he came home from rehab turned into a severe case of pneumonia in one lung—a dangerous culprit for him. So severe that nurses placed him on the highest dose of oxygen short of a ventilator.
Each day, my wife or her brother took my mother-in-law to the hospital for a brief visit. Covid regulations prevented more than one visitor at a time. My wife called my father-in-law’s nurses twice daily for updates. Overnight, life changed for my in-laws, and it continued to change. My father-in-law couldn’t shake the oxygen and eventually entered congestive heart failure. In what seemed like a moment, he was at the local Hospice house . . . and then . . . gone.
I’ve experienced overnight changes myself. One day fine, and the next day in the hospital with a bleeding ulcer. One day riding a bike, and the next day wearing a sling because of a fractured elbow received from a bicycle accident. One day having a retirement nest egg, and the next day having none. One day having a job, and the next day facing unemployment. The list gets longer the more I think about it.
When life changes, we need God to sustain us, as the psalmist said God did for him.
Lord, sustain me as you promised, that I may live! Do not let my hope be crushed.~Psalm 119:116 NLT
We don’t have to worry about God doing His part. He’s promised to care for those who are His children. And God’s as good as His word. The care may not come as we expect or when we desire it, but God knows our needs better than we do—and He also knows His grand plan for us, which we probably aren’t privy to.
Our part involves trusting and believing. Every time something happened to my father-in-law, my mother-in-law reassured my wife by saying, “Your daddy is gonna be alright.” And he was. Not in the way we all wished, but in the way God willed, which for my father-in-law meant streets of gold where a bum leg and a bad heart didn’t bother him anymore.
And when life changes, we will be fine too if we’re connected to the One who maps out our life plan.
Be still, and know that I am God!~Psalm 46:10 NLT
When life changes, trust the One who does not.
What is a go-to scripture you rely on during the ups and downs of life?
Heavenly Father, thank You that through all life’s changes, You remain, steadfast, seeing me through.
In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Copyright 2022: When Life Changes: Martin Wiles: All Rights Reserved