On my bed I remember you; I think of you through the watches of the night. Because you are my help, I sing in the shadow of your wings. Psalm 63:6,7
[This is the conclusion of a 3-part testimony that started two weeks ago. Last week’s post contained a dream that hinted that I would be taken away from much of what had become normal in my life and taken to a remote place where there were no distractions and where my only Companion was God.]
I lay in bed thinking about the dream with all its implications until it was time to get up and go to church. The sermon that morning was on “the wilderness.” We were reminded that Moses received his calling in the wilderness through the burning bush. We were reminded that the children of Israel spent 40 years in the wilderness in preparation for entering the Promised Land, and that even Jesus spent 40 days in the wilderness before beginning His ministry. I sat there overwhelmed with a sense of God’s presence, wondering what kind of ministry He was preparing me for – and whether the wilderness for me would involve the kind of isolation I had experienced in college.
The morning of the surgery I had a sense of déjà vu as I surrendered my wallet, my keys, my cell phone, and my jewelry, feeling strangely naked without them. I tried to dismiss mental images of waking up with no voice and my husband Marty’s crying exultantly, “There is a God!” (Just kidding, but that was a running joke in those days.) Still, I was holding onto the fact that God was with me and was not going to leave me, whatever happened; if He was taking one thing from me, He would give me something else, something better. And with these thoughts, I drifted into unconsciousness.
Next thing I knew I was in the recovery room with a bad sore throat. Marty was beside the bed, and when the surgeon came in and asked how I was feeling, I hesitated before trying to answer, not sure I was ready to find out if anything was missing.
But as I said “Pretty good,” I was thrilled to actually hear the words. It was over, and my “sacrifice” had been accepted and given back to me to keep using, though (with God’s help) never again taken for granted.
I was taken back to my room, where I had a roommate I couldn’t see on the other side of the curtain. We said “hello,” but we were both so worn out there wasn’t much conversation. I slept that night with no dreams, or if I had any, they were immediately forgotten.
The next morning I awoke early. The room was still dark, except for the TV on my roommate’s side. The sound was off, but I had a good view of the picture, and I gasped in recognition.
The night before, there had been a magnificent display of the Northern Lights, magnificent enough to make the local news.
I smiled, and I felt God smiling, too.
Prayer: LORD, thank You so much for giving me life and breath and a voice. Help me to use these gifts – whether speaking, singing, or praying – to glorify You for the rest of my life. In Jesus’ name, Amen.