For the past few Sundays, I've posted about a song that particularly touched me in church that morning. It was hard to pick just one this morning, because Randy picked so many good ones... and he even cut one out at the last minute.
One of our church members (David) has been serving in Iraq since the beginning of this year. He is a single father of several children, some still quite young. It is so hard to think of the sacrifices they make for us as they fight for our freedom (which we so readily take for granted). David is home on leave for a very short time, and will be returning to battle this week. He asked "the Preacher" if he could give a testimony while he was here, which he did this morning. He spoke of God's protection during some very close calls and how much the prayers for our servicemen and women mean to them.
Right after David's testimony, we sang "It is Finished", written by Bill & Gloria Gaither.
There's a line that is drawn through the ages
On that line stands an old rugged cross
On that cross, a battle is raging
To gain a man's soul or it's loss
On one side, march the forces of evil
All the demons, all the devils of hell
On the other, the angels of glory
And they meet on Golgotha's hill
The earth shakes with the force of the conflict
And the sun refuses to shine
For there hangs God's Son, in the balance
And then through the darkness He cries
It is finished, the battle is over
It is finished, there'll be no more war
It is finished, the end of the conflict
It is finished and Jesus is Lord
Yet in my heart, the battle was still raging
Not all prisoners of war had come home
These were battlefields of my own making
I didn't know that the war had been won
Oh, but then I heard the King of the ages
Had fought all the battles for me
And that victory was mine for the claiming
And now praise his name, I am free.
The words to the chorus really hit me after hearing a soldier share about his experiences in a very real war. And how Jesus is the One who gets him through each day.
We finished the song service with "Let the Worshippers Arise" and a great sermon about how our worship matters to God.
On another note, our sweet Ms. Charlsie (my 89 year old neighbor) has experienced another medical trial. A few months ago she had a small stroke that threatened her ability to stay independent, but she fought to stay home. Her doctors allowed it as long as she had people who would check on her regularly. Friday morning she suffered another set back and is in the hospital.
She is able to talk now, although one minute she is very sharp and will tell you details that are very accurate, and the next she is seeing things or very confused.
I truly admire her spirit. She has the best attitude and positive outlook and smiles no matter the circumstance. But, she does not like and does not want to be in the hospital. She misses her little dog, Sweetie, terribly and just wants to be home.
I got a little teary last night when she kept insisting that she be laid down so she could get comfortable. She was already laid as far back as the bed could go. When her niece explained to her that she was all the way back and that's the best we could do, Charlsie replied sweetly, "Well, if that's the best you can do, I guess that's the best you can do."
Today, when she was talking clearly, she told David and me that she was fearful that she might "keep having these spells". There is just no one quite like this precious woman. She is so kind. So loving. So real. Life is to be lived and the material things of this world mean nothing to her. It is hard to walk through this door with her, we love her dearly, but we know her Lord loves her even more... and she is in His care.