Just a few weeks ago my daughter, her boyfriend, and my parents all went to Africa on a mission trip. Upon their return my dad came down with Malaria, the worse strain you could have. He was very sick and in the hospital for almost a week. I've never seen him so sick (which is what everyone said), but PRAISE GOD he is well again and almost back to full health.
There were a few things that came to mind every day while he was sick: 1) I can't imagine what my life would be like without my dad! He is a wonderful man and I love him very much. 2) I wanted to help him. He's always been there for me and I wanted to be there for him. There's something special about taking care of someone when they are sick. It hurts because you can't make them well, but it draws you closer to them because you are putting their needs above your own.
One day was especially meaningful to me. While my mom went to the doctor, to make sure she didn't have Malaria, I sat with my dad. As he slept, I prayed for probably an hour that God would heal him and bring my dad back to full health. During that time God brought to mind how much my dad always does for everyone else and the love he has for people. I knew God would heal him, but I was grateful for the time to sit and pray for my dad and be able to experience taking care of him for that short time. (Later I joked with him about God preparing me for when he gets old...he didn't think it was very funny I don't think! )
I thank the Lord for answering our prayers and taking care of my dad. I also thank him for the time I had to just sit with my dad and care for him.