Friday, July 29, 2016

Ramblings as I wait...

The best classroom in the world is at the feet of an elderly person.~ Andy Rooney

Summer is stalled for us as I wait for a word from my daughter that she is going into labor with our second grandchild.  I was remembering the time when I was her age and waiting for her to be born.  One thing you may not know about me is that I was a barber/cosmetologist for a large 150 resident senior facility for seven years. When I walked into the office the lady did not think I would last.  I was young I did not know what I was stepping into. Little did I know is that I would find little treasures in the mist of their suffering and a joy of purpose in being there as a part of their stories.  
Two stories come to mind.  One my favorite, and one most meaningful.
One of my regular clients was named Harold.  He was wheelchair bound and hardly had any hair so needless to say he was easy to work on.  He had a lovely wife that spent many hours there with him every day.  All of us that worked there got to know her and "quiet Harold" as the most sweetest couple.  Harold never complained, always quiet and agreeable until one day. I not sure if it was the full moon or he was planning this for months, but Harold made a break for it.  There he was joy riding in his wheel chair at full speed down a busy street. I don't know what got into him but he was smiling ear to ear and going fast!  When the aids finally caught him he gave me the funniest smirk I had ever seen.  He had my respect! Nobody knew he had it in him. :)
The most meaningful one came on a normal day. This room needs a haircut this morning quickly Stephanie. So I gathered up my equipment and walked to the room and there I saw a man laying on the bed in what I was told were his last moments of his life.  "Just trim up his hair, for there is no barber in the morgue",said a lady to me.  I was absolutely stunned at this request. Mind you I was young and put on a brave face as I looked at him and knew in my spirit he understood everything that was happening around him.  When the lady left I spoke with him and let him know that I knew he can hear me and tried my best to encourage him.  I prayed quietly to myself..."Lord give me boldness to say what I need to say to this man"!

Just then a child in the next room speaks loudly...
  Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, Ephesians 6:19
I looked over and there was a child and a mother that was visiting another senior in the next room.  The child then started singing... 
Jesus loves me this I know, for the bible tells me so. Little ones to him belong, they are weak but he is strong.
Her lovely singing echoed though that whole wing of that facility.  When I looked down at my client he had tears in his eyes. I asked him if he wanted me to pray with him and he nodded, so I prayed with him for peace and to receive Jesus.  After I prayed with him his daughter came into the room.  She thanked me for cutting his hair and also told me  there was no barber at the morgue.  I told her that he is still here and can hear everything you say.  Just talk to him. She quietly sat down with him to talk to him as I left.
Three weeks later the daughter came to me and thanked me because she had wonderful conversations with him.  He lived three weeks more, rather than the hours the doctors originally gave him, in the company of his loved ones.

 The old and young have something to offer.  We all just need to be open to their stories.

 Devotional Talks for People who Do God’s Business
 They will still bear fruit in old age,
    they will stay fresh and green,

Psalm 92:14 

Even to your old age and gray hairs
    I am he, I am he who will sustain you.
I have made you and I will carry you;
    I will sustain you and I will rescue you.

Isaiah 46:4

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