My mom had been sick for about 8 years. The last 6 months of her life were especially painful. She had leg ulcers that had become infected. She endured painful, 2 hour long, wound care every day from January – July, when she died. Her legs were at times, bandaged from hip to toe since both of her legs were covered with open wounds.
The cleanings that I witnessed were equal to what I would consider torture. My mom would cry and plead for the doctors to stop touching her legs. If there was a chance that she could heal, she needed the dressings changed daily and the wounds needed to be scrubbed.
When I came home to be with her, I helped through the wound cleaning. My main concern was to help her get her mind in a different place. No matter how hard I tried, she was still in so much agony. She did have a pain patch, pain medicine and i.v. pain medicine, nothing helped. They tried relaxing her to the point that she wouldn’t care and that didn’t work either.
We prayed and cried out to God almost all the hours in the day, at this time. Mom and I talked about how God would bend us and not break us. We talked about getting through the torturous pain with God and not in our own strength. She knew that her own strength would break her, but God would not.
At times, we feel like we have had all that we can handle, and that is true when we handle trials on our own, without God. We feel like we really could break. God won’t let that happen. He will let you bend enough to get your eyes back on him.
It takes complete surrender to him in moments like these. There can’t be any doubt, only a trust that he will get you through it. In my mom’s pain, we had to work to that place of no doubt and complete surrender. For the first time in my life I understood what it meant to give it all to God and I think she did too.
Mom did end up in the hospital when I was staying with her. The wound cleaning continued while she was in ICU. It was sad and hard to watch. I wanted to jump inside her head and protect her from all that she had to go through.
A dear friend passed a prayer to me one day while I was in ICU with mom. She prayed it with me at the same exact time that my mom would have her wound care. Mom and I prayed this prayer out loud and she surrendered to God to take the pain from her. She left it to him to miraculously block her pain during the wound cleaning and if he needed her to be in heaven to do that, she prayed his will be done. It was up to him, not her or I anymore. She invited God to be with her.
The 3 wound care nurses came in and mom cried because of the pain she remembered from the last time she saw them. We kept praying and talking to each other. I stayed nose to nose with her and we just prayed and prayed. I didn’t realize how much time had gone by, we were in our own little bubble.
The nurse tapped me on the shoulder and I looked at her. She pointed to my moms legs and I saw the other two people scrubbing her legs. This was the point in her wound care that was the most painful of all. The scrubbing of the open gashes were usually just pure agony. Mom didn’t feel pain. She felt peace of mind and relaxed.
Mom started talking about her grandkids, as if she was sitting at the kitchen table talking with her friends. At one point she asked someone to pass her purse to her so she could show them pictures. She was happy and in Zero pain.
At this point the nurses were crying and we could all feel something different about the room. One of them raised her hands to God with praise. To this day, I can not describe it with human terms. All I can say is that we had a glimpse of heavenly peace that day.
God was faithful to mom. He did not let her have an ounce of pain. She entered heaven, feeling at peace and did not have to endure anymore pain in her last days on earth. God used my moms heart wrenching trial to show himself to me and others. He let her feel his love and see him before she got to heaven. Her fear was released. God knew what she needed.
If I could have seen how my moms sickness was going to show God’s love and miracles before her death, I would have taken the journey differently with her. I would have stayed focus on the plan that he would eventually unfold. There were so many different purposes to her suffering and the journey that we went on with her. I can now see that.
If it weren’t for the stormy days and nights, I wouldn’t have learned how to dance in the rain. I wouldn’t have learned to thank God in the middle of the mess. And I wouldn’t have felt the joy of God’s hands upon my life, with such certainty that he has planned all of this for His glory. Our trials are part of his plan.
In my moms suffering, God showed a miracle on earth for our humanly eyes to witness. There is no other explanation for my moms blocked pain.
It was from that day, that my life and faith grew. That day, I felt God’s breath in the room. There was no denying his glory and power.
God will never give us more than we can handle. He may bend us and shape us, but he will NEVER break us. We can try and do it on our own, that will lead us to feel like we ARE breaking. God doesn’t do that.