Last week I sat with Daisy. Daisy is a great friend. Daisy is actually someone I’ve known for several years. I was like in 7th grade when I first met her at the church I was part of for a long time. She’s like a mom to me. She’s a spiritual mentor. She is indeed an example of grace. She’s been my cheerleader in the faith. She was one of my youth leaders when I was a kid at my church. She loves to hug and she doesn’t mind kissing you on the cheek. She is proud of me and everything I’ve done in my life and is always telling me she loves me. Every time I would see Daisy, we hadn’t missed a beat. She truly resembles a Christ follower.
I got to sit with Daisy last week at the hospital. Her husband of 42 years had a stroke and Daisy was facing the decision of removing her husband off of life support. Her church family, pastors in her life, family, and close friends have all surrounded Daisy with love and lots of prayers. Her faith in God is amazing and I couldn’t even imagine having to sit in Daisy’s place.
She wanted me to go into the hospital room and see her husband. She said, “I’m having everyone grab his hand and talk to him.” She sat down next to her sister and I approached her husbands bed, grabbed his hand and did as Mrs. Daisy asked. Her husband is a sweet man. Quiet and reserved. When I was a kid, where ever Daisy was, I saw her husband. I didn’t know him well, but what I could figure out, gave me enough insight in that Daisy’s husband was a true example of faithfulness especially when it comes to marriage.
Tonight I found out that Daisy’s husband Eric passed away. I don’t know the details. What I do know is that Daisy will need our prayers. Her husband and best friend has left this earth. I have no doubt her husband experienced first hand the grace and mercy of the savior. I have no doubt that for 42 years, he knew that Daisy cared for him and loved him as well as prayed for him daily. Eric got to experience the love of Jesus face to face. He experienced it through his beloved Daisy.
Today I sat with another awesome person. He’s 86 years old. He’s an old Marine. He’s a walking history book. He loves the Lord and often reminded us in church to pray for our country. I sat in his hospital room, we chatted, he slept, I helped him drink some water, he slept some more. I sat in quiet and prayed for him. I even asked him what his favorite hymns were as well as his favorite passages of scripture. He said, “In the Garden,” and Psalm 23. I told him I’d be back and to rest up.
Right after I saw him, I went over to the other side of the hospital and visited a young mom and her husband. She had just given birth to a new baby girl. When I walked into the hospital room, the nurse was just helping the mom get comfortable. The dad had a smile that could fill the world with peace. It was beautiful. I sat with a young couple trying to find balance in a world that is way too noisy sometimes. They shared with me their heart and their hopes as parents. We even talked about the difference between baptism and dedication. I offered a prayer for their new daughter and for the both of them and said I’d be back.
Our part in God’s mission in the world is that we show up. We sit. We listen. We pray. And we repeat. It’s what we do. It takes a while to learn this. Seminary doesn’t teach this. It simply doesn’t. It’s learned overtime. It becomes part of your heart and soul. It becomes second nature. You don’t schedule pastoral care. If you’re a pastor, it’s what you do. It’s a welcomed interruption into a pastors busy day. In a lot of ways, it’s divine. It’s a divine interruption and of course you don’t have to be a pastor to do what is very clear in scripture when it comes to loving our neighbors and when it comes to showing up:
“Let me give you a new command: Love one another. In the same way I loved you, you love one another. This is how everyone will recognize that you are my disciples—when they see the love you have for each other.” John 13:34-35 MSG