Esther attended the Bible school where I was a part of, years ago. She later married a pastor, and both served faithfully. Many years ago, her husband suffered a stroke that rendered him unable to continue ministry. Consequently, she had to step up to the plate to support the family by teaching in a university and a seminary. A few years ago, she suffered a stroke. For a long while her body was half-paralyzed but by the grace of God she recovered and went back to work. Two days ago, she fell in the bathroom and died. She was 55.
There is so much I do not understand about life. Some of us can sail through life without having to face a single storm but some have to face multiple storms. Esther faced multiple storms. But through all the storms she remained steadfast in her love and faith in Christ and never lost touch of her love for others. When I visited her after her stroke, she made it her project to prepare me noodle because she knew it was my favorite. With one hand dangling helplessly and one foot standing unsteadily, she happily cooked my favorite meal.
The last few years of her life Amy Carmichael, God’s missionary to India, suffered from severe neuralgia, which caused her so much pain. However, in her diary this is what she wrote, “Not relief from pain, not relief from the weariness that follows, not anything of that sort at all, is my chief need. Thou, O Lord my God, art my need—Thy courage, Thy patience, Thy fortitude. And very much I need a quickened gratitude for the countless helps given every day.”
We, who have faced multiple storms but remained standing, know that storms will come. But we know that He, who controls the storms, are with us and will supply us with courage, patience, and fortitude. So, our prayer will only be one: Give us gratitude, O God.