Sometimes the sweetness of God’s power can be overlooked because we don’t know or realize that aspect of him. Always remember that God is love, he sometimes doesn’t move in our timing, but he moves regardless. Allow this story to encourage you especially if you have a parent or loved one suffering from dementia or an illness that has affected their mind.
There was an elderly grandfather who had dementia and was in the last stages of that illness. The grandfather lived with his son’s family. One of his grandchildren was a girl of about 10 years old who loved her grandfather very much and couldn’t understand why he said things that didn’t make sense. She didn’t understand why he would yell out words in the middle of the night and wake everyone up. She didn’t understand why he didn’t know who she was. She didn’t understand why he changed and didn’t laugh and joke with her like he used to.
One day the granddaughter was exploring her grandfather’s possessions that were all stored in the attic of their home. She opened one of the trunks that she thought appeared to be a ‘pirate’s’ chest. To her surprise among other things it contained a violin case which she immediately opened. No her young eyes weren’t trained or she would have been able to recognize the caliber of musical instrument that this violin was.
From that time and for many days she would sneak up to the attic, take the pristine violin out of it’s case and hold it. One time she actually took the bow and ran it across the strings, which produced a squeaky sound. From that time on she kept practicing on the violin’ She was cautious to play softly so that no one would hear the ‘out-of-tune’ sounds she made on it and take it away from her.
The grandfather’s health was deteriorating rapidly and this was hard for the little girl who deeply loved her grandfather or “Papaw” as she called him. The girl’s name was Sierra. Sierra had been told that her grandfather was very sick and that she wasn’t to go to his room unless her mom or dad was with her. One day she decided to break those rules. Sierra decided to go into the grandfather’s room with her newly found violin and play him a song, howbeit she knew no cords but she could make noise.
When Sierra stood by his bed and begins to move the bow across the strings, her grandfather’s eyes opened slowly. Eyes that were dim and stayed mostly shut opened and revealed faded blue eyes that somehow became brighter when he saw the worn instrument. He looked at his granddaughter, smiled and barely could speak these words…”Play on my child. You are doing a fine job”. Sierra was so surprised with his response that she grinned back and said, “Grandpa..you like my music”? The very weak man whispered the words of confirmation, but what happened next was almost a miracle. He asked Sierra to allow him to hold the violin and he actually lifted himself up off his pillow. The weak and very sick man had regained strength almost supernaturally.
Now by this time the son was standing in the doorway of the bedroom. With weak hands and a very feeble back, he set up on that make shift hospital bed with a strength that hadn’t been there for years. Unbeknown to his granddaughter but known to his son was the fact that her grandfather had been a concert violin player with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra for many years before he became ill.
The unimaginable was happening as the old man took the violin and the bow and began to play it. What amazing cords he struck, what amazing posture and poise his tired and sick body began to exemplify. The son couldn’t hold back the tears, the tears of joy and peace. Most of his life he heard his father play that very same violin, but this time was different…he knew in his heart it was the last time he would hear his father play.
Sierra was in awe…she was mesmerized by the beautiful tones coming from the violin. Her grandfather appeared to somewhat glow in Sierra’s eyes anyway. The sound of the violin echoed throughout that home and for a few minutes it was like angels joined the orchestra, surely it wasn’t just one violin that was played?
Those moments were just that… moments and then they had to end. The grandfather looked at his son and smiled, he looked at his granddaughter and spoke softly to her; “My child…carry on with loving this instrument, play it for me even though I won’t be around to hear you. Play it with everything that is in you my child…do it for me”. With those words and very weak and shaking hands the grandfather gave the violin to Sierra. He laid back on his bed, closed his eyes to never open them again.
Sierra went on to become a concert violin player just as her grandfather requested. I wrote this story to bring out a point that I want you to know. It took just a touch of a master’s hand to bring an instrument’s sound to a level of a symphony orchestra’s caliber.
Think about God, he can supernaturally touch you and make your life valuable. He can bring a life to order and remove the chaos. He is the master and you can know him today. He is only a prayer away. What do you need him to do? Do you need to know that someone cares? Do you need encouragement? I want to give you that today.
God’s Word says that, he inscribed your name on the palm of his hand, he loves you. You are HIS creation and his Word also says in Jeremiah 29:11, ‘I know the thoughts I have toward you, says the Lord. Thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope’. Trust him today…he is just a prayer away.
By Sheila (Guest Post)
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