The nurse left, and anger and shear panic set in. I only remember feeling this type of fear maybe twice in my life. I think I was the one that went hysterical begging and pleading that we call SOMEONE, anyone who might be able to help us, comfort us, or even keep us sane. "WE HAVE TO CALL SOMEONE," I yelled through my trembling voice, even though I was whispering. Who would it be? Who would we all feel comfortable with and agree on? We had not really wanted anyone to be with us other than a nurse for the final moments. We had wanted to keep it as private and intimate as possible. Who would we call? "Pastor Kirk!" I yelled, "Pastor Kirk!" "PLEASE!" I begged. "Yes, yes, they said. Yes. He is the one."
He arrived shortly after Dad called, and he brought with him sanity, clarity, dignity, knowledge, and love. He entered the living room, as he had done many times before to see Mom, but this time was different. He was not wearing his suit or business clothes as normal, but blue jeans and a jacket. He was not just our Pastor this time, but also our friend. He came in quietly, removing his shoes by the front door, as if to say, I am here, and will stay as long as you need me. He immediatley went to Mom's bedside, and solemnly nodded his head to confirm her condition. He knew. He had seen this before. He settled in with us, willing to stay for the rest of the night, and he did. He was able to walk us through the death phases and breathing changes that Mom was experiencing......and PRAY with us along the way! He actually had more personable knowledge than 100 Hospice nurses could have given us at that point. His wisdom and grace was more than we could have asked for. He brought us the comfort we needed, along with peace as we called upon the Holy Spirit to intervene and take some of Mom's suffering away. We prayed that God be gracious and take her peacefully. And eventually He heard our prayers and chose to answer them. Pastor Kirk was OUR answer to prayer as well that night. And in the end, we were somewhat thankful that Hospice had left us abandoned.
Thanks be to God.