…And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age. Matthew 28:20
“God is with me; all will be well,” is one of the last things I remember my mother saying before she died last year. In the 14 years since her stroke at age 71, it had become a mantra of sorts. She would repeat it every time she was in the emergency room with an infection. Or when she was moved to a new nursing home. Especially when she was afraid to get into a car from her wheelchair for fear of falling. Little did I know when she said, “God is with me; all will be well,” as she developed pneumonia in September, that within three weeks she would indeed be with God — and all would definitely be well.
My mother didn’t know anything about a personal relationship with Jesus growing up. She was a German/Swedish Lutheran who unnerved her parents by converting to Catholicism to appease my Irish father. Even then, faith wasn’t really faith. It was exercise. My mother seemed to worship the sacraments more than Jesus. Faith in Father, Son and Holy Spirit was never part of our home life, except for the standard grace my father sped through at dinner time.
After her stroke, she would encounter Jesus through a pastor who visited her nursing home. She was born again and began daily devotions and attending on-site church services. She would fervently pray, especially in the bathroom while she waited for an aide. She would send me snippets of scripture she found in Guideposts to encourage me. It was heartwarming to witness.
But then my mother started using her mantra inappropriately, in my opinion. She began to dole it out whenever she didn’t have another answer to a problem. One such problem was the fact that she and my father spent the money that was supposed to be saved in trust for my two developmentally-disabled sisters when my parents entered a nursing home together. My siblings and I knew that they never looked into long-term resources for my sisters, but spending that money? “God is with your sisters; all will be well,” was her response.
It angered me at the time. I panicked when I had to step in and file for disability payments my 50-something sisters were entitled to at age 22. I was stressed out when I didn’t know where they would live. My prayers were a litany of fears, rather than an exercise in trust of my Father. All seemed hopeless because I couldn’t make the right things happen for them.
But in the last three years, God has removed the scales from my eyes and shown me His incredible power and majesty in the way He has provided for my sisters. In terms of finances, improved health, friendships, a safe place to live and the opportunity to rub shoulders with celebrities, they’ve been truly blessed. It shouldn’t come as a surprise to me that He would be so concerned for these precious ones.
I realize now that the same God who has brought so many things to fruition in the last three years, is the same God who has been their sovereign Lord from the start. It is truly miraculous how He has carried them from the moment they were born. Decades of worry over their future was nothing but wasted energy, when right in front of my eyes were daily provisions like manna from heaven. I was looking to my own strength and ingenuity, and missing the fact that God was working all things together for good all along.
Watching Him accomplish what we never thought possible has humbled me and strengthened my faith. I know that His plan for their lives could never be thwarted by my parent’s indiscretion, or by my fears and frustrations. He is with them and all will be well.
Mary Meyer is a freelance writer and editor with more than 20 years of experience writing about faith, family and health. Her greatest joy is to inspire, encourage and amuse through the written word. When not creating, Mary loves to help disabled family members, cheerlead her daughter in her post-college pursuits, babysit her granddaughter and support up-and-coming women entrepreneurs. To have the energy to do it all, she makes time for health and wellness activities each day. To connect, find her at marymeyerwrites.com.