“I cry out unto you, O Lord!”
You can listen to today’s devotion by clicking on this SoundCloud link.
“In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness.”
You may ask yourself, what does a picture of this somewhat small bathroom have to do with prayer?
It was in this unlikely place a week and a half ago that I met God in a most profound way. My 98 year old father had just taken a bad turn for the worse. In retrospect, he may have suffered another stroke a day or two before, and was having much more difficulty getting around the house. He was not able to move his feet when I was transferring him and struggled to do what had been relatively simple just a few days before. My wife and I had been up numerous times over the last two nights attempting to help this once strong, self-sufficient man.
It is always difficult to change established habits and it being Saturday night, I automatically helped Dad prepare to take his shower in the cramped bathroom. I was by myself with him, and there had not been a problem previously in moving him.
But when I attempted to move him from his wheelchair onto the shower chair, he panicked and clutched at the wheelchair, and then one of the braces on the tub. He partly fell toward the tub, with me desperately holding onto his gait belt and his waist. Somehow I was able to get him onto the shower chair, when to my horror, I saw that he had scraped his arm on the foundation of the bathtub brace and his fragile, 98 year old skin had broken and a 2 inch by 2 inch raw wound was bleeding all over him and me.
For a moment I was afraid for him, then angry at myself and at my helplessness and predicament. Suddenly all of the tiredness and fear and grief flooded over me and I knelt on that bathroom floor and began to cry. I felt like a child again, desperate to please my dad and feeling like a failure at my own inadequacies. I was weeping and telling Dad how bad I felt and he looked as perplexed and scared as I felt.
In one rush of pain and desperation, I cried out to God. “Jesus, help me, help me, help me!”
And He came and helped me. He calmed both me and my dad. He showed me what to do to bind up Dad’s wound, to finish the shower, to move him safely to bed.
And I experienced the true meaning of that verse, “…the Spirit helps us in our weakness.” When I was weak and forsaken, I cried out to Him, and He came.
And He will come for you, even when you are weak and forsaken, when you cry out to Him.
Come to me, Jesus, when I am weak and helpless. For the sake of Jesus, our Lord and Savior. Amen.
Text and Picture Copyright Steve Nickodemus