Thursday, November 13, 2014

Weeping for Helen

Helen Q. Boldt (November 2013)
“Hi, Bert. This is Tammy with Big Bend Hospice. Your mother is declining at a much more rapid rate. We have changed her status to imminent.” Tammy had been giving us regular updates regarding Bert’s 97 year-old mother, Helen, for several months.

We weren’t surprised to hear the nurse’s words because we had been witnessing Helen’s deteriorating health. Still the news was hard to hear.

For the next ten days, we spent a lot of time at Helen’s bedside at Harbor Breeze, an assisted living facility in Carrabelle. Although she was mostly unable to respond, we talked “with” her, sang hymns she might remember, and did a whole lot of praying, asking God to grant her a peaceful passing.

Then early on a recent Wednesday morning, the phone rang. Helen was gone. My throat tightened when I saw the tears in Bert’s eyes.

We all fear it: the phone call that changes our immediate priorities – the one that announces a death, or an illness of someone very close to us. And suddenly we’re changing schedules, cancelling appointments, and gathering with our loved ones for a heartbreaking family reunion.

This week, we're stepping away from Psalm 51 to memorize and meditate on the shortest verse in the Bible:

John 11:35 (NIV)
Jesus wept.

I’ve heard many interpretations on why Jesus cried at Lazarus’ gravesite. Today, I’m inclined to believe one of the reasons He wept was because He had compassion for the grieving. I’m thankful God cares deeply about the things we go through.

As we memorize and meditate on John 11:35, let’s remember God’s nearness during the times we needed Him most. Likewise, let us pray to ask God to help us show His compassion to the hurting, as we weep with those who weep.

What about you?
  • Have you ever felt Jesus weeping with you?
  • How has God's compassion for you help you show compassion for others?
As always, if you need to talk, I’m here. Please feel free to share via the comment link or click on the About tab to obtain my email address. Pseudonyms are allowed!

I will send you the weekly verses, formatted to fit a standard index card. You must be subscribed to the blog, via email. Leave a comment to let me know which translation you prefer.


  1. I will especially miss Mom.. Sheryl, I really appreciated your encouragement and support foe me during the final days of Mom's life. I know she was aware of our presence with her and she heard us asking God to bless her. Lots of love, Bert.

    1. Bert, it was a privilege to be a part of your mom's life. I am glad we had that time with Helen, especially during her last two weeks.
      I have been thinking lately about the many ways we have been blessed by your mother - and your father. Let's keep their memories close!
      I love you, too, Hon.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...