By Elisabeth Lind
Yesterday I got the privilege to spend the day with my Mom again! And I think I can say, for maybe the first time, it was an all together good day! She had some relief from the constant companion of nausea…and this made all the difference! We praise God!
After dinner she and I began to talk about Steve Saint – son of Nate Saint, a famous missionary pilot. When Steve was a young boy, his father and four other missionaries were killed by Waodoni Indians in an effort to reach this group with the Gospel. Steve devoted the rest of his life to reaching indigenous tribes and has continued to work with the Waodoni, even specifically with the man who killed his father who he has adopted into his family! If you don’t know the story, add “End of the Spear” to your 2016 book list!
In June 2012 Steve was seriously injured and partially paralyzed from the neck down. He had to relearn how to swallow, how to walk, how to use every part of his body. He even had surgery on his head to relieve pressure on his spine. His journey is remarkably similar to Mom’s! Mom and I sat and watched a few videos documenting his journey of healing and we cried many tears. There is true fellowship between those who have suffered. My Mom spoke to me afterwards and said, “when you’re suffering, the people who minister to you and the people you want with you are those who have suffered themselves – starting with Jesus himself!”
Two videos particularly stood out to us. These will not only give you a remarkable glimpse into my Mom’s experience, but will GREATLY minister TRUTH to you!
Through his pain and new perspective, Steve (and my Mom) remind us of the power of gratitude: gratitude for Christ’s suffering, His salvation, small bodily improvements… Gratitude for LIFE. They also remind us that suffering – if we embrace it – can usher us into a new and holy place of intimacy with Jesus. Just as the poem states: “I learned He never gives a thorn without this added grace, He takes the thorn to pin aside the veil which hides His face.”
Throughout this journey there have been many moments where Mom’s suffering has been used to pin back the veil! This Sunday was one of them.
On Sunday some dear friends of our family came down to visit Mom. Michael and Rachel Thompson are the founders of OneWay Ministries and the ministry of Prayercast that I have the privilege of working with. They are also incredible musicians and worship leaders! My Mom has always been greatly ministered to by their music. On Sunday we were ushered in a special way into His presence through these dear friends. The veil was pulled back for a moment as we wheeled Mom out of her room for one of the first times (outside of therapy) and spent about an hour worshipping together. I couldn’t take my eyes off of her as she closed her eyes – tears streaming down her face – she was LOST in wonder, love, and praise! You don’t know the presence of God until you have church in a hospital!
Thank you Lord for the thorn that pulls back the veil.
by Martha Snell Nicholson
I stood a mendicant of God before His royal throne
And begged him for one priceless gift, which I could call my own.
I took the gift from out His hand, but as I would depart
I cried, “But Lord this is a thorn and it has pierced my heart.
This is a strange, a hurtful gift, which Thou hast given me.”
He said, “My child, I give good gifts and gave My best to thee.”
I took it home and though at first the cruel thorn hurt sore,
As long years passed I learned at last to love it more and more.
I learned He never gives a thorn without this added grace,
He takes the thorn to pin aside the veil which hides His face.