Elizabeth Prentiss: If only I could follow her example
Elizabeth Prentiss (1818 - 1878) was a frail woman who suffered intensely from chronic insomnia all her life. Few knew this. Despite her misery and suffering, the world saw a radiant face. She was described as a bright-eyed woman with a keen sense of humour.
One of the darkest days of her life was on January 16, 1852 when her son Eddy died. The five-year-old had broken into a rash and fever. Elizabeth did the little that the doctors could suggest in an attempt to save his life. After Eddy died she recognized that going to Jesus was a great blessing for him, however much pain it cost her; and she wrote lines in which she urged him, "O, hasten hence! to His [Christ's] embraces, hasten!"*
We all could learn a thing or two from ladies such as Elizabeth Prentiss. A woman rarely free of pain and suffering, almost an invalid, could still put on a cheerful smile and radiant face. No matter what is thrown your way or what the Lord asks you to do - whether that be a SAHM or a woman who goes off to work, put on that radiant face and march onwards. Don't let others pull you down or find fault in what you have been asked to do - do all things for the glory of God, with joy etched into your face.
Its one of those valuable lessons we need to teach our sons and daughters. They don't know what their future situation might be, but whatever God asks them to do, do it with a joyful heart. I don't think my aunt expected to remain a spinster all her life, regardless, she always had a smile on her face, so willing to help others and she lived life to its fullest and served God until the end of her days.
Isn't it strange, but it is often the most able-bodied, the healthiest that grumble the most about the lack of energy, lack of time and the need for a sit down. However the most frail among us tend to have the most life, the most desire to be joyful. Perhaps knowing that one doesn't live forever pushes them on to make the most of every day, whilst the rest of us, a little more sure of our situation, more complacent, tend to take it all from granted.
O give thanks unto the LORD, for he is good:
for his mercy endureth for ever.
* Source: Christianity.com