All the psalms cry out to God with pleas and hope and God answers us, yet not always as we would want. In any relationship, we learn to trust by our past experiences. Reading God’s word to us in the Bible, over and over I have been the recipient of God’s promises. That is not to say, there have been no difficult times, for there have been many and they continue. What does trust mean to me/you? To me, it means that God’s love carries and leads, no matter any circumstances that I or my loved ones endure. We are blessed if we have eyes to see God’s love and promises fulfilled in our lives.
It can seem being a caretaker involves so much of our living with the undesirable. Yet in love, we know this call has been commited to us for this time in our life. We are reminded we need to rely on the Lord; to be still, listen for instruction and breathe. In this season of changing leaves, Joyce Rupp writes in her October 2018 reflection, “Life is full of tumbling, stretching, falling down and getting up. When I ponder deteriorating leaves, harvested fields left with nothing, and migrating birds whose songs will be absent for months, I recognize how I, too, must give myself over to trust, to let go and allow a time of restoration. Spring will follow – exactly when, I am not sure – but I trust in its arrival.” May we trust in hopeful moments. If we get run down, our spiritual life is also affected by exhaustion, because we are too tired to serve. Each week we are given a day of rest to relax and energize, yet often being a caretaker, there is no day off. Can you discover ways to restore, even if it is only for a brief time? You are worth this and it is not a luxury, but a necessity. As the verse says, may the Lord’s kindness be upon us, but we must be kind to ourselves first. As we treat ourselves with kindness, this will pay dividends.
To be human is to be imperfect, but God’s love covers all and we are not expected to be self-sufficient. We are called to put our hope in the Lord and be gentle with ourselves. Of course, temptation is all around us to despair at the circumstances of which we have no control. Often a hospitalization can spell a brief freedom from caring for our loved one and then a feeling of relief leads to one feeling guilty. At same time, the patient’s return home can increase the workload. It is a cycle and if one does not have a spiritual foundation and support system to discuss fears with, it can feel defeating, but it doesn’t have to be.
Going through any hard time, we need to keep our ear tuned to the voice of God. Speak the positive things God says to you through His word and through the voice of the Holy Spirit in your heart. Can you trust in God’s faithfulness, one moment at a time? Comments welcome.