Led to Linger


God created Peggy. He created her inmost being. He saw Peggy’s unformed body before she made her entrance into this world on May 15, 1928. All the days ordained for her were written in His book before one of them came to be (Psalm 139:13,16).

The traumatic fall three days before her 88th birthday was no surprise to God. The broken elbow, femur, and pelvis had already been noted in His book. And when Peggy departed this earth to spend eternity in heaven with her Father on May 19, 2016, He was waiting. Waiting to welcome His daughter home.

The words from Psalm 139 were what kept my sisters and me going that one long week as we watched our mom lay in the hospital bed. We felt God’s very presence. His perfect orchestration of events was undeniable.

Considering mom’s age and frail health before the fall, along with the severity of her injuries, the inevitable couldn’t be ignored. My sisters and I prayed for God to guide our decisions as we honored the “Directive to Physicians” she made three years earlier.

That one week was emotionally draining. However, it was also one of great spiritual revival. I want to share just a few examples of God’s provisions.

  • Three sisters. Three extremely different personalities. And we actually like each other! Oh, we didn’t start out that way as kiddos, but God knew we would need one another as the years rolled on and strengthened our relationships as we matured. We have supported each other and tried not to squabble over family matters, especially concerning our aging loved ones.

Behold, how good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell in unity! Psalm 133:1

  • It took some doing, but us three girls were able to coordinate our schedules and planned an 88th birthday dinner for mom on Sunday May 15th. After mom fell on May 12th we were reminded that God is the one in control of our schedules.

The heart of man plans his ways, but the LORD establishes his steps. (Proverbs 16:9)

  • As stated in her Directive, the only treatments would be those to keep her comfortable. As soon as the decision was made to call Hospice, we began to finalize the funeral arrangements. I had completed forms from the crematory that required a notarized signature but was unable to locate a notary at the hospital. The thought of leaving the parking garage and driving in rush hour traffic was a bit daunting after the emotional day. It had to find a notary, so I gathered my purse and opened the door to walk out of the room—just as a gentlemen in a suit was about to knock. He introduced himself as the CEO of the hospital, simply making his rounds to say hello. When asked how everything was going, all I could think to say was how incredible the nursing staff had been. As he walked off, I remembered. A notary! I called out to him and explained my predicament. Within minutes, his assistant was in the room to provide her services. God was there and knew my need.

You know what I am going to say even before I say it, Lord. (Psalm 139:4)

  • Before going to the hospital on what would be mom’s final day, I felt anxious. Had my sisters and I made the right decisions? Had we honored our mother’s Directive? Then I saw a post on Facebook, with the words from Isaiah 60:22. We had prayed. We had asked for discernment. We had felt God’s presence. There was no need to be anxious.

When the time is right, I, the Lord, will make it happen. (Isaiah 60:22)

  • My sister Rhonda prepared to go home after I arrived at the hospital, but felt led to linger. Then it happened. Just as the Hospice nurse explained it would. What a gift that my sister felt led to linger longer. Thankful beyond words that we were with mom. Holding her hand as her spirit left this world.
  • Returning from the hospital after mom passed, I stopped at a red light close to my house, soaking up the beautiful lyrics from Casting Crowns’ Just Be Held. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tIZitK6_IMQ) God couldn’t have picked a more perfect song to soothe my aching heart. I looked over at the car stopped on my left and saw my friend Leiann, who was part of the group of friends I had been texting all day. I waved to her, and as she waved back, she blew me a kiss. Such a God-incidence for Leiann to be stopped at that light. At that exact moment. I felt completely lavished with love. From my friend, and especially from God. His loving arms holding me tightly.

“You’re not alone, stop holding on and just be held.”

Once at home, I went out on my back porch just in time to watch the sunset. (The one  in the photo.) Overflowing with love and praise for God’s perfect provisions, I felt led to linger for a while longersensing my Father sing over me “You’re not alone, stop holding on and just be held.”

From the rising of the sun to its setting, the name of the LORD is to be praised.  (Psalm 113:3)


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