The greatest gift that God has given to mankind besides the gift of
Salvation we receive through Jesus Christ is the gift of family. Family is
so important because they will always be there to love us, encourage us,
and they will be there to support us in the difficult times of life. We
should never take for granted this precious gift of having our loved ones
so near to us where we can relish, learn and share with each other both
from the obstacles and adventures of life. (Ephesians 6:1-3) (James 4:13-15)
If you are in a quarrel or disagreement with someone in your family, I
encourage you to realize that tomorrow is not promised to us and this day
may be the last day to reconcile and reestablish the love between you and
your family. The Bible declares in 1 John 4:11-12 “Beloved, if God so
loved us, we ought also to love one another. No man hath seen God at any
time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and His love is perfected
in us.” The will of God is for us to love one another just as He loves us.
I hope this message encourages your heart to tell your family that you love
them and make a point to share how much they mean to you.
THE GIFT OF A MOMMY
Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn
from it. Proverbs 22:6
I have found nursing patients with cancer to be a challenging and rewarding
occupation. It has certainly been a good distraction from my own familiar
challenge of parenting two teens. Whenever I start thinking that dealing
with drivers' licenses, curfews, grades and peer pressure are overwhelming,
I remember what Rebekah faced, the courage she showed, and suddenly my
problems don't seem so difficult after all.
I remember the day she was admitted to the ward. As I reviewed her
admission papers, I was surprised to see that she was 32 and being admitted
for chemotherapy to treat breast cancer that had been diagnosed two weeks
earlier. I entered the room and introduced myself. Rebekah, her eyes
sparking with love and her ponytail bouncing, introduced me to her husband,
Warren, and her daughters, Ruthie, age six, and Hannah, age four. Cradled
in her crossed legs wiggled her third daughter, Molly, age two.
While I filled out forms, Rebekah directed the unpacking of her suitcase -
a comforter made by her grandmother, a poster of cheer from her church
circle and a family portrait for her bedside table, along with her worn
Bible. Warren gathered the girls to go to the airport to pick up Grandmother.
“I need to place a needle in your arm to give you the chemotherapy,” I
explained. “I'll do anything to get well for my husband and girls. I can
handle throwing up, losing my hair and being tired, but I'm absolutely
terrified of needles.” Rebekah's voice shook and her eyes brimmed with
tears. “You can cry, but please don't move. On the count of three...” “The
Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.” Rebekah said loudly as the needle
slid smoothly into the vein.
With the successful completion of the intravenous, Rebekah asked, “What is
your favorite Bible verse?” “John 11:35”, I answered. “Jesus wept.” “Oh!
That's a sad verse,” she replied, a bit somberly. “It brings me comfort,
knowing that Jesus is sad when bad things happen to His people. It
demonstrates to me a human side of Him that I need to know when I care for
sick people. I know He can and will heal the sick, but returning to health
can entail sad times, so I know He is there to support me in the sad times,
so that I can support patients.”
“I'll have to give that some thought,” replied Rebekah. For the next 18
months, I saw Rebekah on a regular basis to receive chemotherapy and
radiation. A chest x-ray showed the cancer had spread and there were no
further medical weapons to use against the cancer. How could I support her
in this new challenge?
I entered Rebekah's room and found it cluttered with paper, tapes and a
tape recorder. “Nan, I'm making tapes for my daughters, to know what I
feel, think and advise on important occasions. I don't want them to forget
me. Do you have any suggestions?”
I looked over her list - first day of school, becoming a sweet 16, first
date, first kiss, conformation, etc. She let me listen to the tapes, which
were moving and filled with motherly advice, encouragement and love.
Rebekah taped each day from her notes as she grew weaker and weaker.
Rebekah explained to her young daughters that she was making special tapes
that their dad would keep for them to listen to later. She explained that
she was going to live with God and help him get a home ready for them for
when they were very old.
We all knew the end was approaching. I was surprised when I got a frantic
phone call at home from a nurse who said that Rebekah was pleading -
begging that I come with a blank tape. Making a mental check list of all
the tapes she had made, I could not imagine what topic could have possibly
Entering Rebekah's room, I noticed she was having severe shortness of
breath and was very anxious, gasping, “Nan, do you have the tape?” “Take a
deep breath. Of course I have the tape,” I replied. As I set up the tape
recorder, she explained, “This is my most important tape.” I held the
microphone close to her mouth and she began. “Ruthie, Hannah and Molly,
some day your daddy will bring a new mommy home. I want you to make her
feel very special, and how proud you will make me feel if you are kind,
patient and encouraging to her as she learns to take care of each of you.
Help her set the table. Please bring her dandelions to put in the special
vase - most important, hug her often. Please do not be sad for long. Jesus
cried. He knows how sad you are and He knows you will be happy again. I
love you so much, Hannah, Ruthie and Molly. Big hugs, your first mommy.”
I turned off the tape player. “Thank you. I can sleep now.” I adjusted the
pillow under her head and rolled the pillow to her back and exited
Rebekah died two days later.
I mailed the tape to their dad fours years later when Warren and the girls
prepared to welcome their new wife and mommy.
By Nan Pinkston
Read and meditate on these scriptures:
Galatians 6:1-4 “Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are
spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering
thyself, lest thou also be tempted. Bear ye one another's burdens, and so
fulfill the law of Christ. For if a man think himself to be something,
when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself. But let every man prove his own
work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another.”
Galatians 5:22-26 “...the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace,
longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.
Against such there is no law. And those who are Christ's have crucified the
flesh with its passions and desires. If we live in the Spirit, let us also
walk in the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another,
envying one another.”
Hebrews 13:1-3 “Let brotherly love continue. Be not forgetful to entertain
strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. Remember them
that are in bonds, as bound with them; and them which suffer adversity, as
being yourselves also in the body.”
All of these scriptures can be found in the King James Version Bible.
Today’s Selected Poem: A MOTHER'S CROWN
Click here to read --- http://www.Godswork.org/enpoem161.htm
Today’s Selected Testimony: POWER IN PRAYER
Click here to read --- http://www.Godswork.org/testimony121.htm
In Christ’s Service,
Gods Work Ministry