“There is a time, it seems, in our walk through the wilderness, that we must risk walking in darkness and silence. It is at this time we must take our understanding and comprehension of things as they seem, fold it in our backpack and walk with only the hand of God guiding us.”
Finding Courage While Falling Apart
A million little falling aparts.
That’s typically what precedes a major meltdown like my recent Saturday walking-marathon-around-Northern-Suffolk-in-the-dark-of-night experience.
Little did I know that two days later, June 3, 2013*, my dear momma would almost “leave” us. It seemed life was once again calling me to dig deep and muster the courage necessary to put one foot in front of the other. Sometimes it is a good thing that time limits our falling aparts and snaps us into a different mental place. In fact, sometimes this is the very best remedy.
Courage, “The state or quality of mind or spirit that enables one to face danger, fear, or vicissitudes with self-possession, confidence, and resolution; bravery.
I am a firm believer that it takes a great deal of courage to keep going. To face insurmountable odds with shoulders back and head held high. It also takes courageous people who allow us to borrow their courage when ours is running dry. To lend us their shoulder, when ours find it easier to slump forward. To gently lift our chin when ours feel heavy and downtrodden. Yes, indeed, this is one of the great secrets to coming back from our fall aparts.
One such person was an Indian doctor who I met in the ICU at Maryview Hospital, Dr. Yishwas Patel.
I am Still Learning How God Speaks to Us
Mom and I (and my siblings, Mike and Susan) had a very big decision to make. Due to the extenuating circumstances surrounding her sudden demise, she was taken off anti-coagulants and therefore, at risk for the DVT in her legs to break free and cause another fatal incident. The complications just compounded, it seemed. A typical problem with elderly patients, I’m told. So, in light of this, it was advised that she have an inferior vena cava filter (an umbrella-like basket that would catch any loose DVT’s) procedure to lower such risk.
While trying to fill my gas tank at Sam’s Club, my phone rang. Knowing you are really not supposed to talk on the phone while pumping gas, I hesitated answering it, but saw that it was a doctor.
In a thick accent, he began explaining the above procedure.
“Wait a minute, please,” I replied. “I can be at the hospital in 10 minutes. Can we talk then? I really don’t understand a word you are saying.”
“No problem. I’ll meet you in your mother’s room.”
“Are you ok?” asked Tony, the station attendant and an old friend of mine.
“Well, I explained, not really. Here’s the deal.”
Right there, in the Sam’s Club parking lot, Tony prayed a powerful prayer over both my mom and me…and my entire family. Just when I needed a strong shoulder to lean on and some courage to go on, God provided.
When I arrived in the ICU, Dr. Patel met me.
“So, let me explain the procedure,” he smiled, quite radiantly. His gentle, calm nature, gave us a sense of assurance.
“If this were your mom,” I asked, “would you have this risky procedure?”
And then, for some reason, I asked how to pronounce his first name.
“Yish-was,” he smiled.
“Does it have a meaning?” I asked.
“Yes, it means trust. Faith. My mother named me.”
At that moment, I felt my heart skip a beat. The supernatural ascended into the natural.
I looked at my Momma and squeezed her hand tight.
“Well, what do you think about that? I think we are in good hands, aren’t we?”
Now, some of you might think I’m a bit crazy. Overly religious and all that (and I am….overly in love with Jesus Christ, that is). Hyper sensitive. A bit dramatic. All that is true, but only God can make something like that happen. Why on earth would a doctor’s name mean trust and faith? I surmise God loves us so much that he strategically places people in our paths at the exact time we need help.
Thirty years ago, an Indian baby boy’s momma named him YISHWAS (meaning trust, faith) because a frightened woman and her equally frightened momma were going to need some courage to take yet another big leap of faith.
I don’t know what you are facing right now. Maybe you are smack dab in the middle of a million fall aparts. If so, here’s my prayer for you:
You are a real and mighty force.
Right now I pray that you send help and helpers to my friend.
It seems life is falling apart all around them.
They are desperate, sad, frightened, confused, and hesitant to take even a step of faith, let alone a leap.
Give them courage. Give them a strong shoulder to lean on. Give them an encourager who will pour courage into their weak soul.
I pray they will open their eyes, open their hearts, and open their awareness.
May they look for angels unaware.
May they stop whatever they are doing to remember you are their God who will never leave them or forsake them. It may feel as if you do, but you don’t.
You know the exact moment for absolutely everything.
May they learn what needs to be learned.
May they grow in their faith.
One day, someone else is going to need their faith and their courage.
Help them take a deep breath and trust you. You are trustworthy.
In Jesus’s name. Amen.
*Correction to the date of previous post. June 3, 2013 was the actual date.