Today I attended a memorial for a friend from high school. Friends from high school come in and out of your life just because life does that. We all move on yet the friendships can remain for a long time. Her name was Julie, she married and had three children and two grandchildren. It was a little difficult yet good to be reminded that the Lord allows suffering for His glory ultimately. She was an incredible woman who left an amazing legacy and so did her spouse as her caregiver. We had both gone our separate ways so some of this story, I was unaware of. I kept in touch a little over the years with her best friend, but Julie and I talked once in a great while meaning several years in between.
Julie and I saw each other at a high school reunion, her in a wheelchair, me standing, I don’t remember meeting her husband. She told me with a smile; she was diagnosed with MS around eight years before that particular time. I was at a loss for words at that moment. Daily suffering effects people’s lives, the loss of a marriage, the loss of children, the loss of a spouse, the loss or sickness of a parent, loss of a job, loss of finance, being a victim of a crime, no longer having the ability to walk, just everyday suffering. Today they shared her legacy or life story put another way but what impressed me (which it was never meant to do) was the husband of Julie. One year after they married, Julie was diagnosed with MS and a few months later she broke her ankle, to never walk again. As a caregiver for two years, I so understand the dedication, the denial of self at times, the prayers, the crying out to the Lord to heal your spouse, the physical and emotional turmoil that you face and the questions from everyone wanting to help but you don’t even know what to do.
But 24 years ago, he was a young man, he was 21 or so. His faithfulness to his family and wife apparently needed to be shared. People wrote letters about her and him moreover the legacy he has been leaving all these years. I just quietly said thank you Lord, for a godly and faithful man and to those who are caregivers, the quiet one’s no one knows about, those that work in the life of someone else suffering.
He is not perfect; none of us are but he was faithful.