Those are all the treasures for today!!
Have a great rest-of-the-week!!
There was one time in the hospice place when she, Jim (her husband) and I were sitting in the living room and Peggy said she wanted to talk seriously about something. Of course we wanted her to talk about whatever she wanted to talk about. She was lying on the couch, and then she sat up and started rocking back and forth. “What if it’s not true? What if it’s not true?” I think she asked that about four times.
And then she explained. “What if this heaven and Jesus stuff is not really true?” “What if there’s nothing out there... at all?”
Hmm. I did not know how to respond to that, I hate to say. I just sat there for a minute. I was feeling for her, because doubt had often kind of been a part of my faith.
Jim, however, was startled. He said something like, “What do you mean, Peggy? Surely you know that Jesus Christ died for your sins and he has made a way for you to go to heaven.”
Frankly, I thought that was too simplistic. And here, I admit, that though Jim was a wonderful fella, he evidently didn’t know how to help Peggy. He seemed to be blaming her, for her lack of faith. “Oh, how I wish Sam were here,” I thought. He could help her. He always knew just what to say.
I can’t remember just what I said, but it seems as if I kind of argued with Jim, and said that well, Peggy was facing death squarely and surely it would be natural for people facing the end of life to question their beliefs... to work through their beliefs.
Jim was adamant, though. Jesus died for our sins and gives us everlasting life. Period. We should not question that fact. Ever.
I can’t remember just how the rest of that discussion time went, but I do remember thinking that I couldn’t wait to get alone with Peggy - to hear her vent, well, and to let her doubt.
Later we did talk more about it - just she and I. And she talked about being afraid of death. Not just of the moment of death, because she thought she’d die in her sleep, but she was afraid of what came after, and she didn’t want it to be nothingness. Fortunately she wasn’t afraid of going to hell. She was just doubting the whole Christian hope. And I thought - hopefully wisely - that she needed to go through the doubt.... and hopefully come out on the side of faith.
And she did!
Later (not long after that afternoon) Mother told me that Peggy had told her she had had a dream one night that changed her outlook on everything, especially her impending death.
(I'm condensing this.) In the dream she was looking in a big mirror... and then it broke and opened up ... to WONDER. There were flowers everywhere... nothing but beauty.
When she woke up from that dream she was FINE WITH EVERYTHING!!
|Peggy's favorite color was red.|
“You always own the option of having no opinion.”
― Marcus Aurelius
“You always own the option of having no opinion. There is never any need to get worked up or to trouble your soul about things you can't control. These things are not asking to be judged by you. Leave them alone.” ― Marcus Aurelius