The Roommate

Tuesday, October 1

10-1By Cindy L. Korf of North Platte, Nebraska, USA

We . . . are one body in Christ, and individually we are members one of another. We have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us: prophecy, in proportion to faith; ministry, in ministering; the teacher, in teaching; the exhorter, in exhortation; the giver, in generosity; the leader, in diligence; the compassionate, in cheerfulness.

—Romans 12:5–8

When my dad lived in a nursing home, he had a roommate, David, who was recovering from a brain tremor. David’s condition limited his speech to three expressions—arms thrown in the air with a giant smile and a shout, “OK!” he’d stare straight through you and say, “Bummer;” and, a slow walk toward you after which he’d wrap his arms around you and say, “I love you.”

My dad, a tough retired Air Force Sargent, was uncomfortable with David’s strange mannerisms and expressions. He avoided this “crazy man.” Yet, on my visits I noticed how David could correctly express the full gamut of emotions my dad was feeling, whether it was loneliness, pain, happiness, self-pity, or whatever.

On the day of my dad’s release from the nursing home, I told David, “My dad is getting better.”

David threw his arms in the air and yelled, “OK!”

“So, he’s going home. He won’t be your roommate anymore,” I said.

David put his arms down. “Bummer.”

My dad whispered something under his breath about his crazy roommate.

David shuffled over to my dad, wrapped his arms around him and said, “I love you.”

I have thought often how David was like the voice and presence of Jesus. He expressed the needs, sorrows, and joys my dad had while away from home and family. I feel like David looked out for my crotchety dad. It is revealing how God can use any person to show Divine love and concern. All are called.

Prayer for Peace
Bless our various gifts, God, so that we may use them for what matters most.

Spiritual Practice: Examining God’s Call to Me and to All
Reflect on God’s call in your life. Begin by prayerfully asking to recall particular moments when you have experienced God’s presence and invitation. Write in your journal or quietly reflect on images and insights that come.

When has God seemed most real in your life? How and when has God called you to use your energies and gifts? When have you felt God’s love in your life? When have you felt disconnected or resistant to God’s call? How do your gifts and callings connect with the call of God you notice in your family, friends, congregation, or community?

Peace Covenant
Today, God, I will give my gifts with compassion and cheerfulness.

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2 Comments

  1. Susan Gregory

     /  4 October 2013

    Wonderful story – thanks for sharing it!!! Good reminder that we are not truly limited in our expression of God’s love!!

  2. Vera Entwistle

     /  1 October 2013

    The beauty of Daily Bread is that I begin the day with a wonderful testimony, like yours today. Your story was very touching. Many thanks!

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