Signposts Along the Way: Signpost 8 – Part 1 of 4: Hope From The Past

6 Jun

I didn’t realize it at the time, but looking back now, I see that there were more signposts awaiting me that very next summer. As my “Search for Truth” continued, God used a simple act of affection to teach me this timeless lesson: “If you follow after love, you are actually following after God.”

While shopping in town early one summer morning, I bumped into a local minister, Harriet, whom I had met at the infamous Bible class earlier that year. During our conversation, she revealed that she had just brought Holy Communion to a young mother, Rochelle, residing at the hospital in our town. Harriet explained how Rochelle’s children and family had devotedly stayed by her side for months due to a serious illness which also left her bedridden.

Harriet emphasized how much caring and time was spent with Rochelle by her own family. Upon hearing this grave news, I felt deeply touched in my heart. Rochelle was my age. This brought the story very close to home for me. How tragic  and senseless it was for a young mother, the heart of her family, to become so ill.

Not knowing why, I decided that I wanted to visit Rochelle in the hospital. If for nothing else, I would offer my support to her and her family.

I thought about how hard this ordeal had to be on her kids. I wondered what they could use to lift their spirits. Then it hit me! It had been very hot that summer so why not offer our family pool as a place for the kids to relax. They had been spending their summer vacation commuting to and from the hospital from out of town. They had no place to go other than the few lounges that the hospital offered. I thought a little change of scenery would help them get a break from the confines of a hospital room.

I spoke to Harriet and expressed my desire to visit and to have the kids over to swim. We decided that she would speak to the family first so there were no unnecessary “awkward” moments when I arrived for my visit. The arrangements were made and I was set to go in a couple of days. The day I  was to visit Rochelle just happened to one of the hottest days all summer. Even the air conditioning needed air conditioning!

My desire was only to bring a pleasant change to their daily tedium. We would discuss the kids and not  focus on her illness. I hoped this would lift their spirits and add a bit of refreshment to their lives.

When I arrived at the room, I stood outside the door for a few seconds to compose myself. Was I ready for this? All I could picture was this cold, bleak hospital room and how sad and heavy the atmosphere was going to be. How could it be otherwise? A gravely sick, bedridden mother surrounded by her two children and husband. I really didn’t know if I could  endure this encounter. I felt like turning back, but instead found myself knocking on the room door. What I walked into was a sight that I will never forget!

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