Light of the World

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I remember standing at the foot of my dad’s bed in the ER that Monday morning December 5th.  My sister, Valerie, was next to me and my mom had stepped out the room for a moment.  Dad looked at us both with those steel blue eyes and his two pointer fingers flew up and he pointed at us.

I knew he meant business as through the 38 years of my life I had been on end of that pointer finger and look many times.  It meant, “Stop! Listen! I have something important to say!”  I think I remember a lurch in my stomach, and thinking, “Oh Lord, what is it.”

He simply said, “Take care of your mom. “ after a pause he added, “Cause I have one foot on a banana peel and I am going down.”   (Just like my dad to mix the serious with a little bit of humor.)

My sister just replied, “We will dad. You raised us well, but we’re gonna get you better.”  I don’t think I spoke, words couldn’t be formulated…I just remember thinking, “I’m wearing a Snoopy Christmas shirt and this is a serious moment.”

We made a plan that I would go with mom as they transferred dad to a hospital that could manage his high infection count and also nail down an official diagnosis.

I couldn’t even think of what to bring along as we figured we might be there for awhile.  Kev said, “Pack for three days worth and we’ll go from there.”  I grabbed clothes, my kindle, a word search book, and a bag of Party Mix my mom had given me the night before.

Then I heard Andrew…..”Mommy, don’t forget this, you might need it.”

He handed me my Bible.

My sweet boy.  I hugged him hard.  He knew the worry lines in my face weren’t good.  He pointed me to a Source that would help bring comfort in the days ahead.

I don’t remember much of that one hour drive to the hospital as I followed a family friend who was driving my mom.  I settled on a Christian radio station that was playing some nice Christmas music.  It was helping distract me from my thoughts…sorta.

What I do remember is pulling into the city and noticing the beautiful Christmas lights in the trees that lined the entrance to the hospital.  My dad always enjoyed Christmas lights and there wasn’t a time I can remember where he didn’t put out something to decorate our home.  Often he and mom would drive us around to look at people’s lights and he would already be planning for what new additions to add the next year.  Those lights brought a bit of peace in that moment.  A reminder that Christmas was still coming regardless of what was happening in our little world.

As I pulled into the parking lot the song changed to Lauren Daigle’s “Light of the World.”  Making my way into the parking garage to park, I just sat for a moment and let those words wash over me…..

The world waits for a miracle
The heart longs for a little bit of hope
Oh come, oh come, Emmanuel
A child prays for peace on Earth
And she’s calling out from a sea of hurt
Oh come, oh come, Emmanuel

And can you hear the angels singing

Glory to the light of the world
Glory, the light of the world is here

The drought breaks with the tears of a mother
A baby’s cry is the sound of love
Come down, come down, Emmanuel
He is the song for the suffering
He is Messiah, the Prince of Peace has come
He has come, Emmanuel

Glory to the light of the world
Glory to the light of the world
Glory to the light of the world
Glory to the light of the world
For all who wait
For all who hunger
For all who’ve prayed
For all who wonder
Behold your King
Behold Messiah
Emmanuel, Emmanuel

Glo-glory to the light of the world
Glory to the light of the world
Glory to the light of the world
Behold your King
Behold Messiah
Emmanuel, Emmanuel

The world waits for the miracle
The heart longs for a little bit of hope
Oh come, oh come Emmanuel

 

That song was exactly what I needed to hear in that moment.   I was waiting for a miracle. I was longing for hope.

Then I remembered that Emmanuel means, “God is with us”.

I literally breathed a big sigh and whispered, ”Thank you Lord that no matter what happens,  You are with all of us in the moment.”

As you know, things didn’t turn out so well as 10 days later my dad passed away. Standing on the top floor of the hospital where he was, I looked down at those same beautiful Christmas lights that lined the entrance and said, “Well mom, at least dad has a beautiful fly upwards with all these amazing lights.”  I just remember thinking….”Soon, you’ll see the most amazing light show of them all dad.”

Emmanuel, God is with us.

He was with us in those long days in the hospital.  He was with us as we said our last goodbyes and held our tears.  He is with us even now as we remember these hard moments.  We have been held for sure this past year.

Even now as I hear this song and remember those moments I am reminded….Truly He is the Light of the World and a God who is always with us!

Oh come, oh come Emmanuel.

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