I had just turned 40 years old. Sick in bed, I mulled over my situation until suddenly a new truth dawned. I could spend the rest of my life enjoying all that the Lord had given me or spend it depressed over the things that seemed to elude me. It depended not on my circumstances but on my attitude toward them. That revelation changed my life.
Having recently come to know God in a more personal way, I began to communicate with Him daily and to enjoy a measure of His peace. I learned to overlook the failure of my expectations and to meet the big trials with a faith that said, “Together, Lord, we can lick this problem, because nothing is too difficult for You.” I began living in a deeper dimension and, in spite of trials and disappointments, learned to enjoy the wonderful family God had given me.
Four years later, my vivacious, fun-loving mother began her long descent into Alzheimer’s disease. I watched her wring her hands, agonize over imagined slights, suffer from a confused and uncomprehending mind, and endure a living death for nineteen years. I wept for my mother until God called her home. Only then was her dignity restored.
With three known generations of Alzheimer’s in my family, the cry of my heart became, “Lord, let me live every day of my life!”
You and I have a choice: to meet the problems of life as an overcomer or to succumb to the pressures that beset us all at one time or another. Jesus said:
I have come that they may have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.
So which will you choose?
Barbara Hattemer, the author of the just released novel Field of Daisies (a poignant tale of hope, faith, and the determination to beat seemingly impossible odds when Alzheimer's strikes the third generation of a family), was educated at Smith College and Harvard Business School, worked for a management consulting firm before marrying and raising four children. For 15 years she fought for high community standards at home and throughout the country, giving hundreds of Radio and Television interviews and debates. Featured in Christian Herald Magazine and Focus on the Family's Citizen; recipient of Christian Herald's first James 1:22 Award, she appeared on The Today Show with Bryant Gumbel and on Dr. James Dobson's Radio Program. http://www.BarbaraHattemer.com