I’ve shared at length the wonderful way God blessed me with improved vision. You know, even if the Lord had not given me better vision, if He had only enabled the surgeon to restore what was lost from the torn retina, I know God was with me. Even if the surgery had failed and I had lost more vision, God was there in the small moments. He showed Himself in the day by day routine of recovery in some ways that could only have been from Him.
The Swedish hymn penned by Karolina Sandell-Berg, expresses what happened to me:
“Day by day, and with each passing moment,
Strength I find to meet my trials here.”
It was a hard recovery. For one week, I had to lay on my right side with my face turned toward my pillow. I was under strict orders to do nothing, to lift nothing. Even before my surgery, a nurse friend cautioned me to take it easy, fearing any kind of lifting could further tear my retina.
For a Type A personality like me, you might as well put me on Death Row and throw away the key. No longer mistress of my domain, I couldn’t control what my husband ate, what I ate, or when we ate. I was at the mercy of other’s good will to meet my requests and good gracious, I didn’t want to be a demanding patient! Even if I got what I wanted, eating was hard because, well, I’m supposed to be face down. Frankly I was so wiped out, my appetite was all ker-flooey.
The truth was, I was at God’s mercy and His mercy delivered. The second verse of Karolina’s hymn says,
“Every day the Lord Himself is near me,
With a special mercy for each hour”
Here’s where it gets positively wonderful. Our church people took wonderful care of me. Several provided foods I could easily eat in my fingers like string cheese and chicken wraps. Two friends sent me chocolate covered coffee beans in case I had trouble drinking my morning coffee. Then God entered the food arena in such a definable way, none of us could miss it.
Two days after surgery, I thought sluggishly, “Some raspberry Jell-O with applesauce would taste good.” The ingredients were in my cupboard. I could coach my husband in making it. Maybe. The next day, a church lady showed up with supper. You guessed it. She brought raspberry Jell-O with applesauce. Thanks, Lord. But it could have been coincidence. Had I told her that was my favorite way to fix Jell-O?
The next day, I had a craving for Macaroni and Cheese. That night, another church lady brought—Macaroni and Cheese.
Two days later, I thought Potato Salad would taste so nice. I never said a word to my husband about my cravings. Potato Salad was on the menu that another church friend brought over after Sunday Worship Service.
So often, we want to pray the words of Jesus: “Remove this cup from me.” God knows and, if we care to admit it, we know removal of that cup is not what is best. Jesus had to endure the cross to get the prize of eternal life for all of us. I had to endure a hard week of recovery and more weeks of waiting in order to enjoy the reward of improved vision. It’s inevitable that all of us will face the final journey toward death. Ultimate healing comes when we leave this life and enter Heaven’s Halls. The journey is hard. Sometimes it’s long. Sometimes it’s intensely painful. We have to go through it.
So instead of praying for healing for ourselves or for others, perhaps a better prayer is this: “Lord will you take care of me while I go through this? Will You walk beside me and hold my hand?” God has promised He will do that. He will never leave us or forsake us. He will be with us. He will provide for us. He will hide us under his wings, His mercy softens the harshness of the trial. When Jesus concluded his prayer in the Garden with “Not my will but Your will,” the Gospel writer records that an angel appeared and strengthened Jesus (Luke 22:43). The same thing happened after the devil tempted Jesus in the wilderness. Jesus had to go through the temptation but after it was over, “angels came and attended him (Mt 4:11).”
If you’re going through a tough time, try this. Pray that God will show Himself in the small moments. Pray for His day by day provision. Ask for His sustaining strength and grace. Then get ready to be amazed. God loves you. He delights in you. He loves to give you the desires of your heart if you are trusting in His best for you.
Even in the form of Potato Salad.
Music is a wonderful venue that comforts me and reminds me of God’s constant care. Here’s some links of songs that remind me of God’s daily care for me.
What’s your favorite song or Scripture that reminds you God is watching out for you day by day?