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Hold My Hand

Hold My Hand

“Mommy?” Charity whispered into the dark still night. “Hold my hand.”

I felt the soft skin of her little hand slide smoothly into mine. It fit perfectly, like it was meant to be there. The connection reached straight into my mommy heart.

Together we picked our way through the rocky path toward the warm light of the house window.

Conscious of that little hand warming mine I thought how soon she would grow out of this dependence. Will I know when the last time comes, I wondered? Will I know when she is too big to reach for my hand? Will I notice?

Perhaps it will take a dark night like this before I’ll realize my hand is empty, and I’ll wonder how long it’s been since her little fingers curled into mine.

Years passed. It was a night like that, but oh so different.

Bowed over, cut in two with pain in my gut and sorrow of heart, I pleaded into a hushed room,

“Hold my hand.”

I sat beside Charity’s paralyzed body. She had two of her own children whose little hands needed hers. I lifted her heavy limp hand and put it into mine, then leaned my forehead against them both.

Beeps and whirs, sounds of hospital machines broke the black silence.

“Jesus, hold my hand,” I whispered.

I held on because I had no idea when the last time would come. I clasped hers, full of faith in what God could do, yet drained by despair from what He did not.

“Nevertheless, I am continually with you; you hold my right hand.” (Psalm 73:23; ESV)

In the middle of his own murky circumstances the Psalmist Asaph clung to the Almighty when he penned those words in Psalm 73.

He had a night like this and He held tight.

After frantic days of trying to save her, in only twenty-six days a mass in her brain stem robbed her from being a healthy mother and wife. She was unable to move except for those big blue frightened eyes.

When our parenting night is black, God asks us to place a hand in His. Sometimes weary mommy, frazzled daddy, parenting takes us down roads we can’t navigate. Learn to hold God’s hand in the daylight, so you will know His familiar grasp in the dark.

I sat hunched, miserable and raw, her hand in mine. I held because I could, for as long as I could.

“…you hold my right hand…” the Psalmist said.

Seasons passed. Trees budded and shed leaves again. Charity’s babies grew. They pulled her tubes and poked her holes while they crawled over her on a hospital bed.

Almost as suddenly as her decline, Charity’s improvement started like a locomotive. Each day a new ability seemed to bulldoze its way into her arms and legs. Her thinking cleared, the meds dropped one by one. Tubes and machines were unplugged. Amazed doctors and nurses cheered.

And then it stopped.

Her recovery has not been full and final. It may or may not be in this life. But what I do know is that where humans see half-way miracles, God sees beyond.

I know that however brief the years a small hand grasps our own, there is One who holds on throughout eternity.

Today I watch her husband and their three children chatting around her power chair, the throne where she sits. She listens and responds, engaged in their lives, grateful for what God has given. The youngest grabs my daughter’s hand and holds it in her own small one. Charity laughs with pure joy.

By: Sylvia Schroeder serves as Women’s Care Coordinator at Avant Ministries. Mom to four, grandma to 13, and wife to her one and only love, she enjoys writing about all of them. Find her blog at When the House is Quiet. Like her Facebook page or follow her on twitter.

Join us at www.just18summers.com for our parenting blog each Monday-Friday and for info about the Just 18 Summers novel.

6 Comments

  1. Love your writing and your heart ! Wish you were just up the street again and we could pray together again! Take care my friend!

    • Thank you Leah! Those prayers were answered in so many ways. It was a wonderful season of praying together.

    • Thank you so much Leah. Grateful for those days of praying for our children together. Looking back I know many of those prayers were answered.

  2. Oh wow, how beautifully written this is, and how beautifully written your family’s story is by God, the ultimate Author. He is so good!

  3. Grateful with you.

  4. Thank you for sharing this story of your family. It’s beautifully written, and helps me to trust God and cling to Him a little more.

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