Today's daily devotion

Always with Us

“The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want.”—PSALM 23:1 [ESV]

My mom and sister had left an hour before for the hospital to see my dad. I’d fed my cats and then followed behind them.

I was on the highway when my phone dinged. “How close are you all? His oxygen levels are dropping.” It was the group chat for my family. We’d spent the past few days keeping vigil, two at a time, as per COVID regulations.

The text messages kept coming, my sister giving updates. “It’s 85. It’s 69. It’s 65.” I had at least another half an hour to go. Tears streaming down my face, I turned the phone off and turned on a song.

“Shepherd me, O God, beyond my wants, beyond my fears, from death into life.” The psalm played from my speakers and I sang along. Praying as I drove.

“It’s okay, Dad,” I said. “You don’t have to wait for me. It’s okay to go.”

The song continued on repeat for thirty minutes. The refrain focused me; the words offered comfort. I arrived, parked. Went in and told Security they were expecting me.

As soon as I entered his room, my sister said, “He’s gone.” Her eyes were red. “We couldn’t tell you while you were driving. It was 9:36.”

“It’s okay. I understand.”

Later, I looked at my phone and the timing of the messages. Her last one had come in at 9:32. I’d been talking to my dad when he’d gone and I knew God had been with him.

Lord, when I can’t be there with my loved one, may I find comfort in knowing that you are there.

Adapted from
Strength & Grace Magazine

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