I can’t help but smile as I think about my grandma. She suffered a major stroke a couple of years ago and wasn’t supposed to live through the weekend. Because of that, she doesn’t have the ability to filter what she’s saying. This can be really funny and really touching, depending on the moment. Over the past few days, her health declined again and the hospice nurse said that it was time for us to say our goodbyes. With that in mind, I have been listening closely to everything she is saying.
Yesterday for some reason she kept saying my name. My ears were perked to hear anything important she wanted to tell me. At varying volume and intensity, she repeated my name over and over. “Christi. Christi. CHRISTI! (pause) Christi.” I lean in, “Yes, Grandma?” She yelled, “Chocolate milk! Christi, I want chocolate milk!” This was pretty much in between breaths as my aunt was giving her chocolate milk as fast as she could without her choking on it.
Later I asked her what her favorite Psalm was. Although she hadn’t said anything coherent for a while, she suddenly began speaking out at maximum volume:
The LORD is my shepherd! I shall not want! He maketh 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. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: FOR THOU ART WITH ME! (yelling) Thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. They comfort me. (I love that she repeated this) Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over! MY CUP RUNNETH OVER! (she began yelling this over and over) MY CUP RUNNETH OVER! MY CUP RUNNETH OVER! Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.
This reminds me of what Jesus says in Matthew 12, that “The mouth speaks what the heart is full of,” and it makes me so happy that this Psalm would flow from her heart out of her mouth. And loudly. I can’t help but ask myself what am I putting into my heart and mind. I want the overflow to be words that bless and encourage, words of truth and life.