To Let God Work Means to Trust His Will
It was an interesting mix of personalities, those that surrounded me. I sat reading in the waiting room, keeping separate and quiet, close to my Lord. My trust wanted to lie in Him and Him alone, regardless of the outcome. I chose to let God work, to sense Him, and see Him revealed in all aspects. “God’s will be done” was my deepest desire.
Many hours passed as stories unfolded around me. Surgeries were completed and some left to bring patients home. Others shared with one another the trials and tribulations of their lives as well as the reasons that brought them to settle within the walls of the hospital this day.
The Dynamics of a Hospital Surgery Waiting Room
Many walks of life were represented. Friendships, fleeting in nature, were forged due solely to chance rather than choice. Such is the nature of this space.
The room, bit by bit, emptied of many of its occupants, leaving a handful of us behind. Most of us remaining had met with our doctors, received the results of our loved one’s procedures, and were anticipating a brief visit for assurance, if rigid COVID-19 regulations could be met.
A wife and daughter duo were the final ones left awaiting news. The time on the monitor had been loudly announced by the older woman as each hour of her husband’s surgery ticked by, his cardiac history explained multiple times to any new listeners available.
Apparently a veteran of the waiting room, she seemed to exude an heir of friendliness and comfort. However, when asked, the stress being experienced was extreme. Nerves had established deep, keeping this anxious wife optimistically chatty.
I moved to watch the news, straining to hear the lowered volume through the conversation she and another were engaged in. I had much on my mind. The staff had encouraged me to go home since I’d likely not be able to see my husband. Surgery had gone well, but the Recovery Room no longer allowed visitors. Many hours expected there would settle him in his room too late for me to see him due to new restrictions. After much consideration, I decided to wait and see.
Though Separate We Are Each United
As I checked the monitor to see how long my love had been in recovery the woman came and stood nearby, announcing once more the updated information of how long her husband had been in surgery, chuckling as she did so. It’d reached eight hours. I assured her we’d all cheer along with her when it indicated a move to recovery. She smiled as we both returned to our seats.
Shortly after, her husband’s surgeon arrived and asked them to join him in the consultation room. As she passed me I offered up a little “woohoo.” She’d waited so long. Her smile hinted at her appreciation as well as a readiness for this long day of waiting to be over. I resumed watching the TV that hung beside the door that just closed behind them.
Within a short few moments a wail of anguish seeped through that door, a sound of which I’ll not soon forget. It settled deep in my heart. It was followed by sobbing. Their private moment of tragic news was inadvertently communicated to those of us who’d stood vigil with them throughout the day. Though separate we were united, each part of a story both personal and collective.
Tomorrow Is Unknown
When I’d arrived at the hospital that morning, I have to admit I’d imagined the worst. I hadn’t expected it, you see, but I wanted to be mindful that, even should tragedy befall us, I was going to remain focused on our Lord, trusting of His will, no matter what He’d allow. I’d spent the day sensing God but not knowing what my tomorrow would look like. Now, all in a moment, these two women’s tomorrows were going to be drastically different than anticipated.
The door opened and the surgeon departed. They followed, mother and daughter stricken with unexpected grief, and rushed out of the waiting room. The room suddenly felt very empty. The hush was nearly tangible. Weighted and heavy, the silence was loud.
“This wasn’t how I saw this ending when I arrived this morning,” the deceased man’s bride said upon her return. All the imagining I’d done for my own life suddenly brought to mind all of their next difficult steps. I rubbed her shoulder and offered her and her daughter my prayers. They thanked me, their eyes wide, scared, and tear-filled above their masks, so kind in their time of life-changing adjustment. I wandered back to my chair, wishing I’d offered more, but this was their moment.
Talk to God and Let Him Hold You
To them, to you who may also be facing life-changing tragedy, I offer this: Cling to God and let Him reveal Himself to you. We are His from the moment He created us to the time He transitions us out of this world. Entrust your loved one to Him, and sink into Him yourself. True comfort and peace only comes from Him. Talk to Him. Cry to Him. Yell at Him. Let your emotions out with Him at your side and then let Him hold you.
Either inadvertently or intentionally, we tend to keep God at bay. We don’t let Him in or give Him freedom to do His work. We want Him but feel like He’s missing in our times of need. We’re angry at His lack of miraculous help. However, it’s most often us who feel we must be strong in our own power. We pray but then strive for an outcome we envision, failing to realize how real and powerful He is and failing to understand that His planned outcome may be different than ours.
Pray and let Him work. Let go and let Him in. Allow yourself to feel His comfort and see Him at work.
None of us know what our tomorrows will look like, but God does. God has made us, knows us, guides our lives, and will comfort and deliver us from our pain. This may not be experienced in release from difficulties but peace in the midst of them. Though nothing earthly is known of our tomorrows, it is certain that God is there. Remaining focused on Him assures a sense of His strength and peace, regardless of circumstances.
Life is Fleeting
Though not allowed after visiting hours, I was able to be waiting in my husband’s room when they wheeled him in late that night. The smile that lit up his face when he saw me will forever be in my heart. I had what those women did not, another moment. Appreciate them, the little moments, and hold them dear, for they are fleeting.
Isaiah 46:3 Hearken unto me, O house of Jacob, and all the remnant of the house of Israel, which are borne by me from the belly, which are carried from the womb: 4 And even to your old age I am he; and even to hoar hairs will I carry you: I have made, and I will bear; even I will carry, and will deliver you. King James Version
Fear grips us and cripples. It has such a negative impact on our lives but we can be free of it. For more on this, read my blog Fear Displaced