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2012-04-26 digital edition

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2012-04-26 / Church

THEY SAID IT

(Life Lessons from Hospice Patients)

I Sure Hope So

Ella Mae was a delightful lady. She suffered from dementia, but still loved to talk, and would do so to anyone who would listen.

On the week of her ninety-first birthday, we were sitting in the dining room of her assisted living facility, talking about her family. She looked up at some other residents playing dominoes in the next room. “Those old people,” she would whisper, “They’re so boring.”

Whenever we would talk about God, Ella Mae would gaze into my eyes for a moment and then look at her lap.

“You do know, Ella Mae, that God is right here with you?” I’d ask.

“I sure hope so,” she’d respond.

“He loves you, Ella Mae.”

“I sure hope so.”

“He has a plan for you.”

“I sure hope so.”

Hope.

Hope in our language means wish. I hope it doesn’t rain, or that my daughter aces her Geometry test. I wish things would turn out a certain way.

The New Testament word hope, however, means certainty. Hope is living based on facts. Facts are certain.

At times, I let feelings (I don’t feel like God loves me) rather than facts (God loves me) rule my heart and mind. I choose to live in uncertainty. I open the door to fear, worry, and a host of other peace-stealers. When I live based on feelings, no one benefits.

Lord, help me remember that my feelings are not facts - they’re just feelings. Let me live based on facts.

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