Friday, December 18, 2015

Life With Purpose

When Life Weighs You Down

I am going to be honest…this fall has been stressful. My mother-in-law has needed a lot of extra TLC and support. Many events that we had planned had to be cancelled and at times, I have felt a little sorry for myself. I wanted to be more involved with my kids and grand kids. I needed to connect with family and friends and go to Thanksgiving family gatherings and Christmas events. (And yes, I have had some fun as you have seen through my posts) Last weekend, I had several things to do…all fun…and I was looking forward to going and doing. Instead, I ended up in Virginia sitting in a hospital room with a very sweet elderly lady who happens to be my husband’s mom. I could have stayed home and he could have gone to be with her. I could have ignored the situation and made the decision that my life was more important than taking care of someone who spent her entire life caring about others. It was a stressful weekend because decisions had to be made moving forward to ensure quality care for her. I fell into bed each night exhausted and a bit concerned about her future. Life has been weighing me down. I have tried to respond by remembering that we are placed here for a purpose, and I believe that purpose involves serving others.

Changing Needs

We came home Monday evening with things still not settled in Virginia. Without going into a great deal of detail in order to protect my mother-in-law’s privacy, let’s just say we were able to put into place a temporary plan to provide her with the much needed constant care she needs. Yesterday, both my husband and I were stressed because we could not be there with her as she transitioned from a hospital room to her new temporary living space. This is difficult for an 86-year-old woman who has always lived a very independent lifestyle.

Our Supportive Role

Why is it so stressful to deal with the needs of someone whose health is declining? Our life eventually goes on and we fall right back into our usual rhythm. It is his/her life that has been disrupted the most. I believe that if you truly care about that person, in an emotional and psychological sense, you feel their turmoil. The Bible says in Galatians 6:2, Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. Jesus wants us to care for those who cannot care properly for themselves. As Christians, it should bring us joy to serve those who need a little extra support and TLC.

Serving Others Brings Blessing

My mother-in-law has lived in the same town in Virginia all of he life. She has attended the same church for many years. She worked in a cotton mill for her entire career and she still knows a lot of people. This community is a very caring environment. While sitting in that room,  I watched as she had a steady flow of visitors who wanted to drop by and check in with her. She had two sweet church members who stayed with her while we were making arrangements to leave work and prepare to travel. One remained with her until we got there at 10 PM. Her pastor came by to see her every day while we were there.  Two ladies who have been providing care for her in the home, came by to visit with her. What a blessing it is to see others serving her! She is elderly and in declining health, but she has not been forgotten. Why? I believe it is because she spent most of her life serving her Lord, serving others, and remaining connected to her community, even in old age.

Service In Action

This community shows that the world still has good, caring people, who will go out of their way to help those who are in need. They have set a great example to follow. I have chosen to follow this example!

Challenge To Serve

Let me take this opportunity to challenge you to serve others. It does not have to take an entire weekend or trips to another town. It can be something simple such as checking in on an elderly neighbor and offering to pick up a few things at the store while you are out shopping or making a phone call to brighten someone’s day. The lord has blessed us to be a blessing to others. Share how He has and continues to use you to serve others. I’d love to hear!

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