I phoned my friend Betty, a nurse, who lovingly cared for her dying husband, Norm.
For months, he had been confined to the bed, and she had been confined to the house. I asked her if there was anything I could do. “Can you sit with Norm while I buy Christmas gifts for my children and grandchildren? I won’t be gone long,” she asked.
I paused, realizing I had never met Norm, I thought about the tasks I needed to complete for my own family gatherings. I did not want to refuse my friend’s small request, but offering help was easier than providing it. Yet I felt God nudging me to say yes.
In response to my long pause, she apologized, “I never should have asked you to do this. I know this is a busy time for you.”
“Oh, no,” I said, “I’m glad you did. I can come on Saturday.”
This couple didn’t know it, but they gave me an unexpected gift. It must have been difficult for Betty to ask for assistance, and it must have been difficult for Norm to accept it. Surprisingly, God switched our roles. The receivers became the real givers, and I became the recipient.
Although God loves a cheerful giver, He can patiently use a reluctant giver. I thanked God for His unexpected gifts, which were far more meaningful than the ones I had wished for. My visit, which lasted less than an hour, reminded me of the brevity of life and helped me see what’s important. I can get wrapped up in self and family, neglecting God and others.
What are you wrapped up in? Are you open to God’s redirection?
(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)
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