I spent most of this past month of April caring for a friend, who underwent her second hip replacement. Throughout the month, I was repeatedly reminded of God’s presence in the midst of all that went on; from the day of her surgery, until she departed to return to her own home, with her brand, spanking, new hip.
April is a time of renewal; new beginnings!
It started with the day of her surgery (March 30th). While walking down the hall to my friend’s hospital room, I noticed that each room had signs under the room numbers with unique quotes . For my friend’s room we had a quote from Saint Thomas Aquinas (my virtues mentor!). It read: “There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship.”
As I read this quote I realized that the Lord was affirming for me that it was the right thing to do; to take time away from work, to care for my friend at my home.
Then a few days later, as we dug into our new “normal” of walking, exercises, meal preparation, and time for rest, I became weary. I prayed specifically one morning, asking God to give me all of the virtues needed to do what is best for my friend. I asked for a charitable heart, strength to persevere to the best of my abilities, compassion, caring, etc. On that very day, as I went about my daily responsibilities, I came across this quote from Saint Vincent Ferrer, stating:
If you truly want to help the soul of your neighbor, you should approach God first with all your heart. Ask him simply to fill you with charity, the greatest of all virtues; with it you can accomplish what you desire.
God was now affirming for me that He would give me all that I needed to care for my friend.
As the month proceeded, God was ever by my side, spending April, making all things new. He healed my friend. (She’s a new woman now)! He gave me all that I needed to do His will, and then He gave me a new assignment: caring for my husband as he recovers from a doubly torn meniscus in his knee!
Sometimes, the things we have on our own agendas, aren’t necessarily what is on God’s agenda. He has this way of getting His priorities across, if we are willing to listen. So, rather than writing my new book, creating a new college course, or marketing my speaking engagements, I was “spending April” doing His will. Isn’t that how it should be all the time?