Monday, January 30, 2012

Memory Monday: The Still, Small Voice in the Dark

When my grandmother passed away several years ago after having lived the last ten years or so within a fog of dementia I remember saying to one of my cousins, "Grandma knows us again." And we rejoiced in that measure of comfort.

Another comfort was gained from the verses the pastor preached. In my own fog, one of grief, I didn't take notes but I'm pretty sure this is the passage he used:
14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. 15 For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. 16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:
17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. 18 For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. Romans 8:14-18 (KJV)

It brought such peace knowing that during those years that Grandma didn't know us the Holy Spirit knew her and was bearing witness with her spirit as a parent caring for an infant child. No one really knows what goes on within the labyrinth of the mind, but God was with her during those years of suffering after her memory had failed.

I've often wondered how God speaks during times when we are not fully conscious of our surroundings. I don't have all the answers but I think I have one. He uses memorized scriptures, at least until the mind is so far gone that it reverts almost back to infancy. I envision the Holy Spirit using scripture to comfort a senile adult much like a parent uses lullabies to comfort a restless baby.

The living brain never stops thinking, thinking, thinking even when the body is failing or is simply asleep. Many is the time that I've watched a disturbing t.v. show and then experienced a restless night as a result. I try not to watch t.v. in the evening for that very reason.

Other times I've had seemingly unsolvable problems resolved in my mind during the night while I'm sleeping. I must awake fully, get up, and write them down or the solutions will be forgotten by morning.

This month I have been working to memorize John 1:1-14. It has gone fairly well, but verses 8, 9, and 10 have given me some trouble. Once I get those committed to memory I should be able to add the last 4 verses because they are already familiar to me.

The other night I partially awoke unexpectedly 3 or 4 times. The first couple of times I was only semi-conscious and in a dreamlike state but I was aware enough to know that I was quoting John 1:1-8 perfectly. I awoke in the morning saying the verses aloud! As I said later to my Twitter pals I didn't spend the night counting sheep but I subconsciously spent it conversing with the Shepherd! I awoke very well rested, too.

Why not read scripture before retiring and let your brain meditate overnight on God's Word? I'd love to hear how memorizing scripture is affecting you. (And I certainly hope that it is!)

I'm only adding a few new verses this week:
  • Genesis 22:8
  • Genesis 28:20, 21
  • Matthew 16:17, 18
  • Matthew 16: 24-26
  • Matthew 18:3-5

May the word of God dwell in you richly!(Col. 3:16)


  1. I totally agree that people should not watch anything on tv at night that can cause them to dream crazy dreams. My husband watches action packed shows before he goes to bed and then wonders why he can't go to sleep! Ha!

    I much prefer listening to soothing music right before I go to sleep. In fact I leave it on during the night.

    We do our scripture reading in the morning...but it does make sense to also read it right before bed.

    My mom didn't lose her memory before she died, but she did feel anxious and troubled sometimes. The verse in the Daily Bread on the day that she went to heaven was this: "Fear not I have redeemed thee...I have called you by your name, you are mine!" This brought me such assurance and peace. My mom died alone, and I like to picture the angels calming her fears and ushering her into heaven...saying "Fear not Margie...we are taking you to see Jesus!" Or some such calming words. She was a sweet Christian lady...and I can't wait to see her again!

    1. Linda,

      Your mother did not die alone. If I understand the Bible correctly no righteous person ever dies alone except The Righteous One who cried out in agony, "My God! My God! Why has thou forsaken me?" It's true that His mother and some of His followers were at the foot of the cross, but they were of little consolation because it was for their sins He was dying. He was truly alone because of His separation from the Father!

      Then when the work was completed - the atonement and the resurrection - He returned to His Father and sent the Holy Spirit, Whom He very descriptively called the Comforter to remain with them until they join(ed) Him in Heaven.

      It is death that we fear the most and it is death that Jesus conquered. I believe you can rest assured that your mother was never alone, especially when she was dying.

  2. Because hubby hits the hay at 9:00 I have one-two hours for my alone time with the Lord - just reading, thinking, even talking to Him out loud. I don't like disturbing shows any time of the day, but particularly not in the evening. An overstimulating get-together with friends and family robs me of sleep too, lol! You are so right about the Lord working in our sleep - through His Word. I also have pen and paper handy and have even scribbled things down in the dark - not wanting to wake anyone!

    Linda, the verse my uncle pastor gave to me when I was baptized at age 11 was, "Fear not......" Have to quote that to myself often. With hubby having Parkinson's and dementia a huge possibility - fear does want to raise it's head.

    Thanks for this post!! Have a blessed week!


Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.
Psalms 19:14 (KJV)