Monday, August 12, 2013

What Not to Say

A week before we left for Panama, we visited a samonim (pastor's wife) that we know. She had endured a grueling year of aggressive chemotherapy. I believe that her husband had said that the doctors had switched her treatment 8 or so times because her cancer was so aggressive.

We went to visit her because she had been admitted to a hospice. Patients enter a hospice when there are no more treatments available and when it is too difficult to take care of the patient at home. She had endured all that she could and was now awaiting her entrance into her eternal home.

It was not easy seeing her. We had seen her before going to Kona and she had been full of strength. She even taught me how to make this awesome kale/tomato soup. Entering her room, we saw that her cancer treatments had taken all strength, fat, and muscle from her body.

Someone else came a few minutes after we had. They brought two women who were strangers to the samonim. They said that she needed to eat. Had Samonim not been trying to for the past two months? They told us not to cry when we were praying for the samonim. Should we not be able to express our love for her in this way, especially after all the pain she had endured? They told her that she was going to hop out of bed soon... if she took a certain supplement. Yes, that is what they said.

I wanted to yell, "Get out of here!" But, I stayed quiet out of respect to the person that had brought these women. At the end, there was even, "If you order right now, they can send it to you by tomorrow for a $70 charge." The moksanim (pastor) and samonim were desperate. The person was persuasive. A lot of money went out for those supplements.

As we went to our car, I told my husband:

1. I was angry at those women for offering such false hope. Those supplements couldn't guarantee anything. Jesus is our only hope. Our eternal hope. The only One who can comfort in these types of situations.

2. If I am ever in hospice care, I do not want strangers to come into my room. I want people who knew me and loved me to surround me.

There is a time for everything. When you go into such a situation, be Jesus' hands, feet, and mouth. Comfort. Pray. Listen.

Samonim passed away into eternal glory that Saturday.

We were so thankful that we could go to her funeral the day before we left for Panama. We took our children because they knew her. I have written about this before. I do not want to shield them from this reality: life and death are a part of living in this world. But, we are so thankful that this is not all there is.

When we accept Jesus into our hearts, we have an eternal home. We are sad because we won't see her in this world anymore, but we know that we will see her again one day. Her two daughters praised their mother for teaching them about establishing a sure foundation in Jesus. They were devastated by the loss of their mother, but they knew that they would see her again.

All I could do, was pray for Samonim's husband and daughters and say, "The Lord comfort you."

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