Today's Guest Post is by my friend and fellow-blogger, Connie Pilston Shoemaker.
Being Grateful for Beauty
When my life is at its worst, I seek solace in the beauty of creation; because it is there that I am reminded of the awesomeness of God. It is there I seek restoration and healing. Never have I been more aware or more grateful for the power of beauty to affect my soul than when witnessing a struggle toward Heaven.
Recently I sat vigil with a sweet lady who was quickly being consumed by disease. Her body was becoming increasingly fragile as the disease relentlessly devoured cells, bone and tissue. The hospital quickly realized they were no longer able to keep her comfortable but the transfer to Hospice would take some time. I did what I could to bring her comfort and tried to soothe her furrowed brow and clenched fingers. I begged and pleaded with the nurses for medication while my patient writhed. I still hear her moans to this day, it was THAT horrific. Both of us, believers in the power of prayer…prayed. I prayed aloud with her as my heart silently screamed…”Where are you in this ugliness God?”
Every few hours the nurses had to reposition her and would send me from the room. I sought solace in a garden located in the middle of the hospital. It was never crowded, even some of the staff were surprised to learn of its existence when I mentioned it.
Those few minutes surrounded by spring flowers, plants, butterflies and a lovely turtle pond filled with mothers and babies as well as sweet tiny song birds flitting to and fro, replenished my soul.
Immersed in God’s creation listening to his symphony in the chirping of birds and water trickling into the pond as the sweet fragrance of flowers and freshly dug earthed bathed away the medicinal smell I was cloaked with, my spirit took flight.
His sunshine not only radiated but his glory emanated from each of these perfectly crafted, intelligently designed creations. God was still on the throne, still causing the sun to shine. I took solace and comfort in being reminded that life is beautiful and precious and it does go on. As I prayed I felt God speak to my heart about seasons, and change and wholeness and healing in heaven.
In His beauty I had respite from the heavy burden of watching someone losing their grip on this earth and start for their real home where beauty was far greater than anything we experience here.
I would drag myself from the garden to resume the vigil by the bedside. I would tell her what I had seen and experienced and my prayers took on new energy and a different tone. My spirit and my confidence renewed in a Savior who is bigger than any disease.
Eventually the patient was moved to a hospice and relieved of much of her pain as well as her consciousness. She was a horsewoman much of her life and as God would dictate, her room there, overlooked the pasture and horses. How amazing is our God to continue to lavish beauty on the broken. I talked of the view outside her window and for those final days she was finally pain free and surrounded by beauty.
The last day, I put on some worship music and as I sensed she had one foot on earth and one in eternity I spoke the beautiful words of scripture in her ear. We talked of her going to the source of all beauty. I asked her what she was seeing, because I knew she was almost there. The sun rays played lightly across the bed, the room was warm, and outside the horses were grazing as she took her last earthly breath and inhaled the sweet fragrance of Heaven. The moment was beautiful and I was grateful.
God is the author of me and is at the center of all that I create whether it be in written or spoken form. He has ignited a passion in me about his amazing creations. Through communicating the goal is to connect people with their Creator. A natural born encourager without the pom-poms or megaphone, I weave biblical truth and life experiences together to motivate, inspire and encourage. The end result is to have God glorified and lives changed and refocused on the Creator.
Visit Connie at www.kissedbythecreator.co