I Can Hear You Now: A Tale

Judge Tom Parker
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I Can Hear You Now: A Tale | May 6th, 2013

I Can Hear You Now: A Tale

Mini Blinds 2

Dawn leaked through the mini blinds inside the hospital window. The pastel walls looked gray in this light. Like my mood.

My eyes scanned the dry erase board. The “Today Is” date was two days old, again. When I’d first noticed this two weeks ago, my mind had screamed to my limbs to get up and fix it, to make a simple correction. Now, I was getting used to the idea that I could not walk. I still wanted to tell my nurse to fix it, my mind not yet accepting that I could not talk.

In a couple of hours, my wife would be here. Thank goodness. These days were awkward to say the least. She’d enter the room with a burst of energy, hoping to see overnight improvement in my condition. She’d disguise her disappointment when none was evident. She’d update me on the news in the neighborhood. She’d stare at her phone and read me emails and texts from our kids. After thirty minutes or so she’d wear down and human silence would settle in the room once again, leaving only the blips and bleeps of the monitors.

I remembered writing a blog post years earlier in which I’d commented about talking and reading to my mom as she lay unable to speak or move in her hospital bed. Years before that, I would read short stories to my dad when he was immobile after his strokes. Now it was my turn. My spirit cried out to the Lord to deliver me, but nothing seemed to be changing. At times, I could hear the doctors talking with my wife in hushed tones outside the room. I was glad I could not hear their reports.

At noon, my wife would open her Bible to the list of Scriptures I’d written down after my mom died. I’d been a little cryptic, labeling the envelope, In case I can’t talk to you someday. I was glad I had prepared for this. Each would begin with these sweet words of eternal truth:

You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. . . You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely. You hem me in behind and before, and you lay your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain. Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me; your right hand will hold me fast . . . all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.

Including this one, I’d think.

On and on she would read, sometimes two hours or more. God’s words, living and active, would refresh my spirit, through the mouth of his servant, my dear wife. The Scriptures she would read not only served to remind me of God’s gospel about my future life, they would flow like sweet honey into the cracks in this one.




  • Darleen Grimsley

    I felt much like this man. When I lost my husband about 5 yrs. ago I became paralzed with fear and sometimes feeling like I could not speak from overwhelming grief. But as my church family kept encouraging me I was able to know that some how God was with me in all my circumstances. With my friends family and my fellow Christians brothers and sisters I was able to get past all the fear and grief. Oh Yes I still have my days of grief. God has given me all I need to give me the strength I need to get through each and every day. Amen.” I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

  • http://www.facebook.com/paula.k.collins.7 Paula Kechisen Collins

    I remember reading scripture at my mom’s bedside in the hospital the last two weeks of her life. Even though she was not conscious I would like to think she heard them and was glad to hear God’s Word. Not only did it provide peace for her I think, it also provided peace for me; especially in her final two hours before she went to be with Jesus.

  • http://www.facebook.com/tomandmelisa.parker TomandMelisa Parker

    Wow…I’m speechless. -mp

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