My grandmother, so I hear from many miles away across a cell phone signal, agreed willingly to the move to the nursing home. She moved in this evening. My grandfather is resistant.
Elsewhere, in another part of the country, my two (and a half!) year old precious niece is enjoying her still-new room. She soaked it in with eyes wide and in uncharacteristic quiet. A hush fell over the room as she saw what her Daddy had done just for her. "It's so nice," she breathed. The breathless awe of something just for you. Something grown up and special and wonderful.
In a yet another part of the country, my son enjoyed an evening with one of his favorite people on Earth...a bright, beautiful young lady preparing for her first year of college at my alma mater. The first time Mama and Dada entrusted him to someone not a parent themselves. And he not only survived without me for the evening, he loved it. He waved when she left. My son doesn't wave 'bye-bye', he waves when he sees something he wants. He waves harder when he senses he's not getting it. He waved very hard when we came inside. He loves her.
My grandfather agreed to go tomorrow. What reasoning finally worked? I don't know. But I don't think it was human eloquence. I think it was a divine intervention. I think this because I asked for it specifically, me and an untold number of friends and fellow believers. And I asked God to remind my grandfather, who has nearly circled around the sun on this planet 100 times, that He is in control, no matter where he lives. That God is to be trusted, no matter who is calling the shots. That the next stop is Paradise, good and faithful friend, hold on, keep trusting me to the very, very end. God sustained my grandfather across two world wars, the nation's stock market crash, the Great Depression, his youngest daughter's illness which could've killed her, his oldest daughter's car crash that should've killed her, his only son's mugging that could've left him dead, personal injury that kept him from working and the paychecks from coming, the birth of their only grandson, five years later, their only granddaughter, and even their great-granddaughter and great-grandson. In the century that my grandfather has spent here on this side of Eternity God has proved faithful, trustworthy, and sovereign. What on Earth does he have to fear? This is what I asked God to remind him.
Did he? I have no way of knowing for sure. But the little text that came about an hour later that informed me he had changed his mind told me that, one way or another, God had heard me and my prayers had been answered.
The juxtaposition of it all just astounds me. My niece with her brand new big girl room...so thrilled with the change, so excited to be a BIG girl, full wonder and awe at this big, exciting world laying at her feet. My son growing confident, learning to be okay without me, having first adventures without me, growing so big and strong. The dawn of new life, the twilight of a life well lived. Something about it inspires me...to trust God a little faster, a little stronger, to hold onto Him a little tighter. He prepares new big girl changes for me with as much love as tenderness as my brother does for her beloved daughter. He takes me on new adventures with people I come to love and trust, just as my son is learning to do in his toddlerhood. And He will sustain me across an untold amount of years and an untold amount of struggles and victories, blessings and trials. No matter where I live or who is calling the shots, GOD is faithful, trustworthy, and sovereign.