Saturday, April 4, 2020

He's our Ever-present Help

Psalm 46:1-3
God is our refuge and strength,
ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
    and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam
    and the mountains quake with their surging.

I loved listening to my Gram tell stories.

Grammy as a teenager
When the 1918 Spanish Influenza attacked, my gram was nine years old. In October a messenger about Grammy's age, dropped a telegram at the door. A military officer had alerted my great-grandmother Helen Hannah Smith to the urgency of her son's illness. "If you want to see him alive, come right away." My Grammy Sara fetched her brother Bernard and his wife, and the family loaded into the Model T and traveled from Lynchburg, Ohio to Camp Sherman in Chillicothe, Ohio where her brother, Walter, prepared to serve in WW1. The flu had hit the camp and my great-grandma Smith was determined to see her son. 

Sara, too young to visit, waited on a bench with the doctor's wife, outside the building where the infected men stayed. Great-grandma applied a mustard plaster to Walter's chest in hopes the home remedy would help. Sadly, Walter died during the epidemic with complications from pneumonia. Great-grandma Smith, Grammy, and other family members contracted the flu. Thanks to the doctor who lived across the street and a neighbor who left soup on their step every day, they survived. As my gram's memories echo with sadness and sorrow, I'm reminded of the folks who have lost loved ones during the COVID-19 pandemic. My heart breaks for anyone who has suffered such loss. 
Please pray with me that God pours peace over those who mourn.
Grammy, Great-grandma Smith, & Mom
Are you feeling exhausted, nervous, sad? Are you mourning? God wants to wrap you in his arms and comfort you. He reaches out to the brokenhearted, the hurting, the sad. He offers shelter in this time of distress.

As I've reflected on my Grammy's story and witnessed her life, I know she clung to Jesus. She loved God and set an amazing example of resilience and faith in her 92 years. No matter what we're going through, God is our strength and our hope. He gives rest to the weary and peace to the broken.

Seek the Father who is our ever-present help in times of trouble.

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