Saturday, May 31, 2008

Worrying and Playing God

Yesterday, my mother went in for some routine surgery. It bothered me more than I wanted to admit. First of all, it marks the fact that my mother is getting older and there is nothing I can do about it. It is a reminder to me that one day she will pass on and be with her Lord like all of the saints who have gone before her. I know I am not ready for that day yet, and so a reminder that it is approaching, fast or slow, is still very frightening to me.

But that wasn't the only reason why it bothered me. One of the things that kept playing through my mind is that I *should* be there. Despite the fact that my vocation of wife and teacher keep me from being able to pack up and go home every time there is a crisis there, I feel horribly guilty that my vocation of daughter cannot be fulfilled along side every other vocation even though there is no physical way for this to be so.

This didn't stop me from being guilty and feeling like a bad daughter. My father spent the night in the hospital by my mother's side alone and all I could think about was how I should be there to help and support him and to help take care of my mother. Then I started to think. Well, what is it that I could do if I was there? My first thought was to get Dad his coffee. Dad needs coffee like fish need water. That could be something I could do to help. But, then again, Mom's condition was not life threatening, so he probably doesn't need to spend every waking moment at her side. In fact, it probably did him some good to get his own coffee, so maybe that would be more of a hinderance than a help. I definitely wouldn't be any help to my mother in the hospital room. I am no nurse or doctor and I have only a basic understanding of pharmaceuticals. While she's in the hospital, there are people whose job it is to help her with recovery. Well, I wouldn't be much help in the way of her being at the hospital.

Maybe I could be help at home. Well, actually, not as much. My father has been blessed with two wonderful congregations who are allowing him to take as much time as he needs to help my mom recover at home. He'll be free to do the cooking, cleaning, administering of Mom's medication and the like. Besides the fact, I talked to Mom today on the phone. She had just gotten done taking a shower by herself. I think she'll recover nicely and quickly. She sounded happy and already on her way to healing.

So, if I am honest with myself, I know that there is nothing to feel guilty about. God, through His infinite wisdom and mercy, has set up people who have vocations and gifts specifically designed to help my mom through this bump in her life. All of my worries were for nothing because God indeed takes care of His children. If I were there, I am sure that God would have used me to help my mom and dad, but since I am not, He has put things into place to help where I would have. My worries are little more than a blatant sin against the First and Eighth Commandments.

The First because for some reason, I thought that I could be God and take care of my mother better than He could. I thought somehow *my* presence would make a difference when in fact it is *Christ's* presence that makes a difference.

The Eighth because I doubted God's Word that He would take care of my mom and worrying about her anyway.

Praise be to God that I am a forgiven sinner through Christ Jesus!