Listen to this devotional:
Nehemiah 2:2 – So the king asked me, "Why does your face look so sad when you are not ill? This can be nothing but sadness of heart." (NIV)
I sat at the computer reading an article about health, and suddenly, I thought, "Could they be talking about me?"
The heading of the article read, "No one knows your parents as well as you do, and no one cares for them as much. But caring for an aging family member can be a challenging time. Make it easier by preparing yourself, your family, and your parent for some of the changes that may be in the future."
Why did I say they could be talking about me? Mostly because I have been there and done that, caring for parents on both sides of the family, who suffered through illness and changing times. As children, we did the best we could, helping in these circumstances.
What did I learn? Many of us are challenged to maintain our independence. Sometimes it means downsizing our living accommodations and completely changing our lifestyle. By no means do I have all the answers, but I do observe the change in others in my age bracket, and often, it's not pleasant.
There is one thing that never changes — and that is our service to God. Perhaps I didn't say that in quite the way I meant it to be, for often, the way in which we serve God does change, due to limitations of physical or mental health. Yet we are still called to serve.
In many ways it seems sad to imagine such changes, but God uses us in different ways in different situations. We must remember that we gather our strength in Him and for Him.
1 Corinthians 2:9-10a – However, as it is written: "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him" — but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit. (NIV)
Prayer: O Spirit of God, though we mean never to be a burden on our families, sometimes You choose differently, and we have no choice but Yours. We pray that we might serve You right to the time of our departure from this earth, when we go to a far better place to be with You. We pray that family and caregivers will be given strength to act on our behalf when our strength is gone. We pray in Jesus' name. Amen.