Ps 23:4 is the verse that comes to my mind as I reflect upon the past months. It has been tumultuous to say the least, with me being admitted to hospital for pneumonia earlier this year followed by an operation last week, to John and Desmond being constantly plagued with allergy which also resulted in an A&E visit, and to Janine being diagnosed with croup and dealing with her subsequent reflux for months.
Even as I am recovering now from the side effects of the antibiotics post operation, I thank God for this time to rest and take stock of the past months. To give thanks that “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For you are with me; Your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” (Ps 23:4)
Indeed, God is with me every step of the way. The pneumonia episode was possibly the hardest period of my life, even harder than the time when I had to undergo treatment for breast cancer. Physically, this was at a whole new level as I could not move due to the excruciating pain in my ribs and lungs. Every breath felt like an acute sharp stab into my body and I had to rely on sleeping pills and massive drugs in the hospital to get through the day. It would have been impossible to get through those days without hanging on to the promises of God and knowing that He was for me and with me. I was surprised by text messages from friends/shepherds/Pastors who said they felt led by the Lord to message me. All your prayers and encouragement shone a light in the darkness I experienced, reminding me that our God cares and He is the ultimate savior.
By His grace, I recovered way faster than what the doctor had expected and could be discharged after several days. Nevertheless, it took another month before I could feel any semblance of my ‘normal’ self and begin to carry and play with my kids. I will always remember the time when John asked for me, and everyone told him I was too sick and unable to move. He immediately said he wanted to pray for me and said a prayer to Jesus for me to get well. Then, he told Des that he wanted to give me his “Jesus loves me” sheep. He brought his blue sheep, which he’s had since he was a baby, and gave it to me before leaving the room. Tears still well up whenever I think of that moment.
Having gone through the different health episodes, I cherish my children more than ever. They are so precious and I feel so blessed and privileged to be given the opportunity to steward and nurture them. They bring me incredible joy and delight, and it makes my heart so full just to watch them. Janine is the sweetest angel, always smiling and happy to play and relate, even when she was very sick. Her gentle and independent spirit also made caring for her easy for us amidst our health challenges. John has been an incredibly loving and sensible son and big brother. His gentleness and graciousness towards his sister has inspired me to be more gracious and gentle as well. His hugs, kisses and prayers for me, especially when I was unwell, are like medicine to my soul. Just like night, John recited Ps 23 together with me as I put him to bed and it blew my mind how three years has flown by since he first arrived!
I thank God that the health issues are now behind me. As David declared in Ps 23:5-6, (You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the Lord Forever), I shall continually enjoy life and life more abundantly!