Give Me Strength

Now I have come to explain to you what will happen to your people in the future, for the vision concerns a time yet to come.”
While he was saying this to me, I bowed with my face toward the ground and was speechless. Then one who looked like a man touched my lips, and I opened my mouth and began to speak. I said to the one standing before me, “I am overcome with anguish because of the vision, my lord, and I feel very weak. How can I, your servant, talk with you, my lord? My strength is gone and I can hardly breathe.”
Again the one who looked like a man touched me and gave me strength. “Do not be afraid, you who are highly esteemed,” he said. “Peace! Be strong now; be strong.”
When he spoke to me, I was strengthened and said, “Speak, my lord, since you have given me strength.”
So he said, “Do you know why I have come to you? Soon I will return to fight against the prince of Persia, and when I go, the prince of Greece will come; but first I will tell you what is written in the Book of Truth. (No one supports me against them except Michael, your prince.
And in the first year of Darius the Mede, I took my stand to support and protect him.)

  • Daniel 10:14-11:1

I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

  • Philippians 4:13

I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that he considered me trustworthy, appointing me to his service. Even though I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief. The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus.

  • 1 Timothy 1:12-14

Six days before my wife passed to the Lord, she collapsed at home, exhausted after the colonoscopy that morning, but possibly having a heart attack.  The EMTs had to enter through the window since she collapsed against the bedroom door.

She was revived and sent to the hospital ER.  When I arrived, the nurse was asking some “value of life” questions that they are required to ask.  My wife was asked if she had reason to keep going.

My wife saw me enter and sit in the visitor chair.  She turned to the nurse and said, “This one here,” pointing to me, “called 911 and had them come rescue me through the bedroom window.  So, I guess if he wants me to stay around that much, I should give it a try.”

My heart sank.  I did not want her to want to live longer only because of me.  When the nurse left, I reminded her of some grandchildren that she would want to see.  Her attitude perked up, but the conversation was darker than usual.  She was tired, and I did not realize how tired.  I focused on the kidney failure, the shingles that were almost gone, the borderline pneumonia that came and went, and the GI bleed that, after yet another colonoscopy, they could not find.  I thought if she just rested and gained strength, she would be fine.

That night, with her in the hospital and me getting home well after dark, I prayed for strength for me.

And as I was praying, I said, “God, it seems that each time I ask for strength because I cannot bear any more of this trial, the trial seems to get harder.  You teach me that I am still far from the last ounce of strength.  There are always reserves that I know nothing about.  But, Lord, this time it seems different.  I really do not know from where the reserved strength can come if not from You.  My wife needs a lot of strength, but I need a lot also.”

Two days later, my wife came home, tired, but well enough to leave the hospital.  She had no energy to walk alone.  I stood in front of her and I had her hug me from behind.  I took a step and then she took a step.  It took about thirty minutes to walk the distance that usually took less than a minute.

For the next two days, she went to dialysis once, but she spent the rest of the time in bed, and much of that time, she wanted me to stay with her. She kept saying that she did not feel right.  I rigged various things to help her stand up next to the bed and the toilet.  She got to where she could do those things without my help.

Then she asked me to bathe her the last night.  She had used up all her strength just walking into the bathroom.

The next morning, she wanted to walk to the car on her own.  I had turned the car around so she would not have to walk as far, her car door next to the back porch steps.  She tried walking around the back of the car, and she asked “What happened to the car?  There’s no engine here!”  I muttered that she needed to turn around.  The engine was at the other end of the car.  It was twenty minutes later that she had a heart attack as she entered the kidney dialysis center and less than twenty hours until she was gone.

In the month since then, I have slept longer, and rested more than I have in years.  My wife, on the other hand, is with Jesus, with no need to rest.  All pain, suffering, and sorrow have ceased for her.

Oh, Lord,
if I had only known…  You give me each morsel of strength that I need just when I need it.  How can I go on?  Only as Your Will allows and only by the strength You provide.  In Your name I pray, Amen.

Soli Deo Gloria.  Only to God be the Glory.


Add yours →

  1. My heart went out to you as I read this account. That is a lot to go through. You need the rest. It is another blessing from the Lord. You are in my prayers!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. When we all get to heaven what a day of rejoicing that will be, when we all see Jesus, we’ll sing and shout the victory! I’ll sing and shout with you My brother! ❤️

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you. I am working with the pastor to get what she would have wanted in the Memorial service, although she never talked about it. But as I said today, watching her Memorial service from Heaven versus looking into Jesus’ eyes? I’d choose Jesus, who cares what people here on earth thought about me compared to being with Him, and what He has to say.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Linda Lee @LadyQuixote April 24, 2023 — 10:38 pm

    This post is heartbreaking and encouraging at the same time. Your faith, your love, your sorrow, and the beautiful relationship you had with your wife. Oh, dear Lord Jesus, please give Mark strength and grace in abundance.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: