Recently I received a 3:45 AM text, "Are you awake?" My friends know my issues with sleep these days! In an effort to stay asleep, I put my phone on mute at night, but something (we all know Who) woke me up when the screen lit up. My first response was the friend I play a word game with was having trouble sleeping and up playing, so I closed my eyes to return to dreamland. When the screen lit up and again, I knew I needed to check it--it was a text.
A good friend had been up with stomach issues and was supposed to take her spouse for surgery over an hour away. Their plan was to leave at 4:45 AM. Could I come take him? Of course I could! Throwing on clothes and with a lick and a promise, I was ready to roll. I had to take the Wonder Dog for a short walk, since I did not know how long I would be gone. Thankfully, he did not malinger--in fact he thought I had lost my mind by dragging him out at that time of the night. I pulled out of my garage at 4:30 to make the pick up.
The poor guy was forced to endure Lulu's Medical Transport which included one hour and fifteen minutes each way of my non-stop talking. I always enjoy hearing the male perspective on things, and do not often get a chance for a one on one conversation with a man. BLESS HIS HEART! There he is strapped into the seat belt, my captive audience. If I had known ahead of time, I would have made a list of those subjects which I am curious about a man's perspective. Instead he got a random shot gun blast of things that popped in my head. We all know what a splattering of loose association that can be.
I am certain he was greatly relieved when the nurse rescued him from the early morning barrage of conversation. So, I settled in to watch the comings and goings of patients and their family and sleuthly listen to nearby conversations. Most patients had only one person with them, since it was early and the surgery center was for routine eye surgery (is any surgery routine--stay tuned).
After a couple of hours, I noticed an ambulance pull into the parking lot with red lights flashing. The receptionist flew out the door to redirect them to the side of the building. By this time, the paramedic was already through the door and refusing to be redirected out of the sight of the waiting room. He insisted he needed to be immediately admitted with his cases of equipment. WELL NOW! My heart is pumping! The waiting room had filled by this time and we are all looking at one another wondering what has happened and who it happened to.
For twenty minutes, we are left completely in the dark. I am sitting there praying it is not my friend, but also knowing if it is not, someone else in this room is about to get unexpected news. Finally, the ambulance is gone and the "Head Nurse" comes out looking for the family of one of the patients. Thankfully it is not my friend, but let me tell you for twenty minutes my heart was pumping and the adrenalin was flowing. The fear of bad news was thick in the room.
When I questioned my friend on the way home if he was aware of the excitement, he said he did hear them talking. "I can't get her to breath," was what he overheard. Let me tell you, I immediately thought how I would have felt had I needed to call my friend and tell her this had happened to her spouse. Going in for routine eye surgery had become one of those life changing days. A mark in time for the family of that patient.
We all have those mark in time days in our lives. It can be joyous marks in time-marriage, births, new jobs and other wonderful life changing events. It also can be explosions of grief days-deaths, divorce, lost jobs, arrests or any event which brings the world crashing to a halt. We are all sitting in the waiting room of life knowing one or more of these events are on the horizon. Those days forever alter our life and become life markers. The point in time we begin to use as a reference--the before and after marker.
Those days are going to come--some things are unavoidable in life such as death. What is important is how we continue to live after that point. Do we listen to what God has promised us and continue down the path He has planned for us? Do we become stuck in the pain of that moment unable to move forward? As Believers what is our response to those marks in time? God's desire is for us to live life to the fullest-whatever it may look like. Only with His help can we accomplish this. HE is our strength and portion--He is our rock--He is our fortress and strong tower--He is the One from where our help comes. With Him even the hardest markers in life can become markers of strength and courage to continue. There will be markers, but life goes on. How we use the gift of time is a reflection of our love for Him. Acknowledge the mark, and then continue down the path being available for His good pleasure until that final mark on this side of eternity. Do not get stuck in the waiting room, but instead march out the door with His strength and face the day before you. All for His glory and good pleasure.
We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed;
perplexed, but not in despair;
persecuted, but not abandoned;
struck down, but not destroyed.
II Corinthians 4:8-9