God in the details
I am not a detail person. I plan and envisage, then rely on others to fill in the blanks and cover the specifics. But thankfully, God is a detail person, and is concerned with the details of my life.
Sam has cancer of the rectum and the bladder, Parkinson’s disease and hyperthyroidism. He is 53 years old and was a polisher and cleaner until his health prevented him from working any longer. He came into Peacehaven Nursing Home at the beginning of December. Sam’s sisters May and June said he was a Christian, but is angry and bitter, blaming God for his deteriorating condition. He can’t wash or feed himself, change his clothes or brush his teeth. Sam is completely dependent on Peacehaven’s staff to do everything for him. And he will not get better.
While June completed the paperwork, May talked to Chaplain Jimi, asking questions about the nursing home. A devout Buddhist all her life, she prayed to her ancestors and other gods, burning incense and visiting the temple at every opportunity. She had been searching for an elderly woman who looked after the three of them when they were young. Although she prayed to her gods to find this woman, nothing happened. She called hospitals and nursing homes all over Singapore but with no luck. Then, about three years ago, she accepted Christ as her Savior, and asked the one true God to help her find her friend.
As she and Jimi talked, they walked around the home. Passing one of the resident living areas, May looked in and saw an elderly woman sitting out in the open near a window. She thought she recognized her and went in to look more closely. Yes! She had miraculously found her old friend—the woman who had looked after May, June and Sam all those years ago.
She is 99 years old, blind in one eye, and has been in Peacehaven for nine years. But she was sharp enough to recognize June, and in their reunion, they made another discovery—she had become a Christian in Peacehaven! The two women praised God for his incredible blessing, and now when the sisters come to visit Sam, they visit their old friend as well. God is in the details of their lives.
There is another detail in the familiar, timeless Christmas story. Simeon had been waiting in the temple for many years for someone special to come. Although old, he immediately recognized the Messiah when he took the infant Jesus into his arms: “For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all people, a light for revelation to the Gentiles…” (Luke 2:30-32). There is detail in the phrase “in the sight of all people.” The Message paraphrases it this way: “It’s now out in the open for everyone to see.” If you have been searching for fulfillment and peace in your life but come up empty all the time, you need to change the way you are looking. Ask God to show you the one, true way to peace. He’s out in the open for everyone to see. We celebrate his birth each December. He is Jesus Christ, the Light of the World, and the Savior of mankind. If you look for him, you will find him. God is in the details of your life.
Western officers Captains Ian and Isobel Robinson are directors of Peacehaven Nursing Home in Singapore.