BIMI
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At first we didn't talk about the shadow that hung over her, but day by day it began to creep into our con- versation. Kelly Sue had leukemia and the prognosis was not good, but still she was radiant and hopeful. One day she said, “My parents don't know that I know I may not have long to live. I do realize that, but I also know that God has a plan for me.” Then she smiled and said, “But I would love to graduate from high school,” and with a look of anticipation she exclaimed, “Oh, how I would love to walk down that aisle in a WHITE DRESS.” overpowering grief. She kept saying, “I cannot do it; I cannot do it.” At that moment such an over- whelming feeling of inadequacy en- gulfed my soul. I cried, “Dear Lord, we are so young and so inexperi- enced. How can we possibly know how to comfort this poor mother?” I saw my husband slip his arm around her shoulder. He was saying some- thing to her. I leaned forward to hear I have followed that trail in Australia and England and Eastern Europe. Recently, I fol- lowed a trail of tears with my own family. A few months ago I sat with our daughter beside the body of her husband who had just been promoted to Glo- ry. With tear-filled eyes and a trembling voice she whispered, “Mom, I am a widow now.” As a young bride and min- ister's wife, I learned a sweet lesson on the porch of that funeral home so many years ago, and after more than fifty years of serving in ministry with my husband, I can say with great assurance: G raduation was getting closer, but Kelly Sue was getting weaker. It seemed that we held our breath in suspense. Would she make it until gradua- tion day and if she did would she be strong enough to walk down the aisle? Would she graduate or did the Lord have other plans for her? T wo weeks before gradu- ation, she had to be hos- pitalized. We went every day, and it was becoming clear to us that God had a greater plan for Kelly Sue. As we stood beside her bed, we knew that she was slipping into a coma. James put his hand over hers and said, “Kelly Sue, God is here.” She opened her eyes and smiled and said, “Yes, I know.” That night Kelly Sue walked down heaven's aisle in a robe of sparkling white and received her diploma from the Lord Himself. T he scene is still vivid to me today. We were standing at the door of the funeral home with Kelly Sue's mother, Doris. I had never seen such 14 • NATIONS A few weeks later, we were awak- ened in the middle of the night by the ringing of the telephone. Sam, a young husband and father of two small children, who was a member of our church, had been in a terrible automobile accident. We hurriedly made our way to the hospital. As we stood beside his mangled and dying body and heard the sobs of his dear wife, it dawned on me that as a minis- ter's wife, my life was going to be one that would follow a trail of tears through this world of sorrow. And so it has been. what he was saying. His words were clear and distinct. The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He ma- keth me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake. Her back straightened; her head lifted; her sobs subsided. We walked with Doris through the door of the funeral home to see Kelly Sue for the last time. She was wearing a WHITE DRESS. YES, THERE IS A BALM IN GILEAD, AND HIS NAME IS JESUS. YES, THERE IS COMFORT FOR SORROW, AND IT IS GOD'S WORD. YES, THERE IS A SECRET IN THE SHADOWS. YES, THERE ARE TREASURES OF DARKNESS. Mary Ray