I was providing chaplain services at the bedside of a woman dying
of cancer. She hadn’t eaten or drank anything for days. She had been sleeping and unresponsive during that time. The nurses knew and had told us that she was actively dying.
As we stood quietly by her bed, we talked to her and about her, encouraging one another. Suddenly, a male nurse she had been quite fond of walked into the room. “Hello Mary,” he boomed with his deep base voice. “HI!!!” she shouted back sending the rest of us flying backwards in shock! It was the last thing we expected. While this was the last word she ever spoke, it just showed us that she was still with us in the moment.
I also remember a somewhat darkly humorous Monty Python skit about carrying out the dead during the black plague. One man objected to being carried out of the house. "I'm not dead yet," he kept objecting while others argued with him about his status. While intended to entertain, this skit has often made me wonder how often we're ready to "bury" something or even someone prematurely.
What I mean is, how often have I/we been ready to give-up when God is still providing grace and patience. How often have we thought a project, ministry, or relationship was "over," but God sees that it's truly NOT over and, in fact, may be about to explode with fruitfulness?
Now I'm not suggesting we pretend things are fine when they're not. Nor am I suggesting we cling to something that needs to be put aside. What I AM suggesting is that we need to seek God's guidance as to when to move on and/or when to stick-it-out a bit longer. Whatever your facing--let God's direction guide you (Prov. 3:5-6). Don't assume anything...let Him lead and give you the timing as to when to bury the past and move forward...
To that end,