Focus on the Small Gifts in the Middle of the Big Storm

Note: This is an excerpt from Jodi’s book– Depth: Growing Through Heartbreak to Strength.

I will never forget that day God gifted to me.

“Would you like me to warm you up some soup?” I asked Jeannie as she rested in a special hospital bed placed in the middle of her dining room where the table once sat. “Yes,” Jeannie answered faintly.

As I propped up my friend with a pillow, I was thankful for the schedule change. Originally, I had planned to take our kids to a trampoline park so Jeannie could rest without any interruptions.

However, a text from her that morning changed everything. She was getting weaker and was concerned about being alone, so the kids and I came to her house for the day.

Little did I know then what a gift that change of my plans would become.

As I warmed up the broth in the microwave, my mind drifted back to her phone call just four months before. The shocking diagnosis and the uphill battle with the chemotherapy appointments that followed. My friend had fought hard, but sadly, the cancer was winning.

Standing in her kitchen just a couple footsteps across from her, I glanced over at Jeannie’s frail body lying in bed. My heart was breaking as I realized my time with her was fleeting. My friend was dying, and I was not ready to say goodbye. I was not prepared to lose her.

We had supported each other through many hard times, and I had so much to share with her knowing her time on Earth was quickly coming to an end.

The microwave beeped, letting me know the soup was ready. I grabbed a spoon and sat down next to her on the bed. In between each serving, we talked. We laughed. We cried.

I told Jeannie how thankful I was that God had brought her into my life.

I shared with her what an amazing friend she was to me, and how I would cherish all our memories. With tears flowing from both of our eyes, I told her I was proud of her and how strong she had been through this. Her faith was inspiring!

I also reminded her that she was leaving behind a wonderful legacy! Both of her kids knew Jesus and were aware of how much their mother loved them. Jeannie was such an intentional mom.

As our conversation turned to her children, our eyes became floodgates as we began to weep. A mother’s worst nightmare is that something will happen and she will not be there to watch her kids grow up and be there for them during their ups and downs. This was becoming a harsh reality for Jeannie, and we were both heartbroken.

That day, I promised her that I would be there for both of them. I told her that I could never replace her, but I would help them the best that I could.

There were lots of tears as well as lots of memories shared that special day. I will always cherish that precious time I had with my friend. Not everyone gets to share with their loved ones what they meant to them.

In my heart, I was praising God for a gift in the middle of the most heartbreaking of circumstances.

Praising God does not guarantee a miracle. Outwardly, everything remained exactly the same. However, praising God changes you inwardly. It fills you with a peace beyond your understanding.

Do you need to be filled with peace?

To continue reading, click the link to my guest post for Sarah’s blog series about “How God has shown Himself good even in circumstances that haven’t felt good in your life.

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