And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.
~ Hebrews 13:16
Yesterday I spent part of my day with a couple who were celebrating their 71st wedding anniversary. As I listened to the story of how the couple met on the beach in Galveston, and then married just a few months later, I got a real sense of what the two were like as a young couple. They invited me to journey with them through the early years, the birth of two children, as well as, two miscarriages. Times of peace, and of war, and how they simply, "learned" to appreciate each other.
I acknowledged the depth of vulnerability that they allowed one another to see. The times of great loss, but also times of great joy. The last four years have been very challenging for the couple, as the man has slowly declined and now spends all of his time in bed and is completely dependent on caregivers and family members.
His wife admitted, "I just never dreamed that this is how things would end up. We were always so happy and active."
The couple understands that this is more than their "golden years." These are simply days to give, "thanks to God for," as she shared.
The couple is now experiencing the days of ultimate vulnerability. Instead of focusing on the weakness they both encounter at this time of their life, after experiencing loss after loss, they now are vulnerable to moments where they surrender their circumstances and invite the spirit of grace, mercy and love to fill them to overflowing.
For they are the reminder for each of us that while we may face unexpected weaknesses that invite real vulnerability, these are also moments for potentially the greatest acts of faithfulness and fruitfulness.
Each time we experience vulnerability it is not a sign of weakness, but instead, moments when we are invited to embrace one another.
Stay in God's grip!
G. Todd Williams (c) 2019
Rev. G. Todd Williams lives in the Houston metro area and is a Hospice Chaplain at Essential Hospice, Webster, Texas, and is an ordained Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) pastor.