Sometimes when mountains crumble it is good to be still and know that God is God…
I’m sitting visiting a few minutes with Mom when she looks at me, as she often does and asks that familiar question, “Who are you?”
“I’m Cheryl,” I reply. Usually this answer will cause her to smile and say, “Oh, Cheryl.” Or to ask “Cheryl Lynn?” with some recognition.
But today she says, for the first time, “Cheryl…Who’s Cheryl?”
“I’m your daughter.”
“Oh,” she answers blankly. And then politely adds, “It’s nice you came.”
I say, “I love you, Mama.”
She answers, “Oh, you do?”
“Okay,” she replies.
I tell her about her four children and name all of them. She bites her fingernails and seems uninterested. I tell her she was a good mama to us and took good care of us all the time. And she answers, as if I was speaking of strangers, “Is that right?”
And I’m sitting with Mom in the same living room where she watched over me when I was a little girl, where she threw me birthday parties, where she handed out Christmas presents with joy, where we read our family devotions every night, where she rocked her grandchildren with love…and she’s asking me who I am. And wondering who Cheryl is.
And my heart crumbles and I fight tears.
I take a small Bible out of my purse and ask Mom if I can read to her and she agrees. I open to the Psalms and read from chapter 46 (NLT)…”God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble. So we will not fear when earthquakes come and the mountains crumble into the sea…” And a little later in the chapter…“Be still, and know that I am God!”
Alzheimer’s is living in a changing world. It keeps quaking and shifting. And things we thought were strong and forever, like mountains and like a mother’s love, crumble away and slide into the sea.
There is no safe place in Alzheimer’s. You can never expect things to be better tomorrow. In fact you can be pretty confident they will be worse.
There is no safety or security in Alzheimer’s. But there is in God’s arms. He is our refuge and strength. He is our help. He didn’t say we would get through it all without tears. But He says we can do it without fear.
I can trust Him and be still and know that He is God.
I can’t control this disease. I can’t make Mom’s mind remember anything. But I can know that God is with us and that He will help us today and through it all. And I can know that in the end we will be with Him for eternity and all will be restored.
So today I will rest in that. And I will be still, as the mountain crumbles. And I will know that He is God.