“She’s in My Hands”

December 10, 2019

“…‘In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength…’” (Isaiah 30:15, NIV 1984).


The following email was sent to me as a matter of prayer:

“In April, my wife was found to have a large frontal lobe GBM. Her last MRI showed diffuse recurrence despite radiation and Temodar. She has decided to enter hospice care. She is incredibly at peace. She tells everyone that very soon she will be healed when she is in Glory. I’m not near as strong as she is, and have been ‘frustrated’ at my inability to help her. I think we, as physicians, feel that we have to ‘do something’ about everything. Saturday morning, I had a sitter for her, so I could do some errands. I was having a talk with the Lord recounting my feelings and asking for strength. He whispered—it was a whisper, but it was as loud as a shout. He said, ‘She’s in my hands.’ That was it. But that was what I needed to hear. I am still struggling with what she’s facing, but I know without question that she is totally in His hands and He is all powerful.”

—Michael Fleming, MD, FAAFP


What does life mean when the most important things in life are out of our control?


Dr. Fleming pegged us right when he said that we so often cry out, “We have to do something!”


We say it about our patients, sometimes claiming more control over illness than we should.


We say it for our kids when they make insane choices in life.


We say it about ourselves when faced with possible financial failure or malpractice.


We say it when the one we love has left us for another.


We say it when the world we have fashioned with hard work and deep devotion is caving in beneath us.


“We have to do something!”


The problem for us as Christians is not with the words, do something, but with the pronoun, “We.”


The problem with “We have to do something’ comes when we have the hubris to think life is under our control. It’s not.


God hands us little pieces of life that He allows us to influence in important ways. But those pieces don’t fit well without the rest of the puzzle. Not for those who grieve at the three funerals I visit this week, or for those with drug addicted children, or for those of us who have harmed patients unintentionally, or for the one whose spouse has left her for another.


“We have to do something” only makes sense when God is in the We. It only makes sense when we allow the God who knows the Big Story to take control over our eternally important little story to accomplish nothing less than the redemption of all creation.


Dr. Fleming understood and, after he heard God’s whisper, placed the love of his life into “His hands.”


Dear Father,

Life is too deep and too eternal for me to fix anything without you in charge. Let me place it all in your hands.


Al Weir, MD

Al Weir, MD

After leaving academic medicine, Dr. Weir served in private practice at the West Clinic in Memphis, Tennessee from 1991-2005 before joining the CMDA staff as Vice President of Campus & Community Ministries where he served for three years from 2005-2008. He is presently Professor of Medicine at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center and Program Director for the Hematology/Oncology fellowship program. He is also President of Albanian Health Fund, an educational ministry to Albania where he has been serving for 20 years. He is the author of two books: When Your Doctor Has Bad News and Practice by the Book. Dr. Weir’s work has also been published in many medical journals and other publications. Al and his wife Becky live in Memphis, Tennessee, and they have three children and three grandchildren. Dr. Weir is currently serving on CMDA's Board of Trustees.