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2011-08-11 digital edition

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2011-08-11 / General Stories

THEY SAID IT

(Life Lessons from Hospice Patients)

“I Can’t Wait to Get There”

Barbara was in her 90’s with an active mind and a huge heart. She was forced to trade her walker for a wheelchair and was often in a great deal of pain. She was a joyful person and a delight to be with.

One day, Barbara and I were visiting, talking about heaven. As we looked at various Bible passages, she got misty-eyed and very quiet. She looked up at me and said, “Gary, I can’t wait to get there.” She leaned forward in her wheelchair and whispered, “You see, I’ve got a treasure waiting for me there.”

“What treasure is that, Barbara?” I asked, expecting to hear something about rewards or crowns.

She smiled and said in an even softer voice, “My husband!”

Thank you, Barbara, for reminding me of my priorities. My family, friends, fellow servants at church, co-workers – they are the real treasures, not my talents, abilities, or accomplishments.

I know my priorities are out of whack when some thing, any thing, becomes more important than the people around me. Each person is created in the image of God and is of priceless, eternal value. I’d do well to chisel this truth firmly in my brain.

I want to see people more as God sees them, and then act accordingly. Lord, help me do this.

Thanks again, Barbara.

Gary Roe is the Chaplain of Southern Care Hospice and is interim Minister at First Baptist Church in Lexington

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