It had been a long, difficult, stress-filled week. One in which I felt invisible and undervalued. Oddly, by Friday, I actually looked forward to going to the nursing home.
Visiting with my mother-in-law since she’s had her stroke has provided much joy to my husband and I, as we listen to her reminisce. My stress melts away. She regales us with memories from her childhood, family weddings, her first tube of lipstick, and her rogue disobedient puppy. Odd little memories that help reconnect her brain synapses as she finds her way back to the here and now.
But this visit was different. Mom was confused and disoriented. She was convinced someone had moved her during the night, playing a horrible joke on her. We tried our best to calm her, softly talking to her and assuring her she is exactly where she has always been and is supposed to be.
The frown between her eyes refused to go away. Mom worried and fussed about getting back to the nursing home, who had tricked her, where are her meds, she needs help! But the ultimate thought that drove her to tears was Mary. You see, Mom thought it was Easter.
In one breath, Mom was fidgety and anxious about where she was. In the next breath, she was feeling Mary’s anguish at having to watch Jesus crucified. “Oh, it must have been so hard for Mary to watch her Son’s death on the cross…That must have been so hard for her!”
Pondering Mom’s thoughts, it wasn’t just Mary whose heart was broken. God must have felt this same pain, sending Jesus to die for us. How heart wrenching for Him to send His only Son to earth for us. Why? Because He loves us. We are held hostage to sin. God would pay any amount of ransom to free us, even His own child’s death. He’s our Daddy, and we are precious to Him (Isaiah 43:4).
For you know that God paid a ransom to save you from the empty life you inherited from your ancestors. And it was not paid with mere gold or silver, which lose their value. It was the precious blood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God. 1 Peter 1:18-19, NLT
We eventually quieted Mom. As I was smoothing her bed sheets, making her comfortable, Mom looked steadily into my eyes. She was calm, settled.
“You’re a good daughter-in-law, Ellen,” she said to me.
For the first time that week, I felt valued.
Grace be with you,