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Today I’d like to comment on something I have observed in my own life over the years that tends to rob me of energy and joy. But it is a lie that I believe comes from Satan and can hound caretakers more than any single group.
What is it? The lie that says, “This will never end!” Another version of this lie is “You can’t do this. There is no way you can do this. And you are all alone.”
“This situation that is hard. This pain. This suffering. The difficulty you are going through…it is never going to stop! In fact, it is probably going to just keep getting worse and worse! It will never get any better.” Does that ever play in your head…or some version of that lie?There are two lies the caretaker hears: This will never end and You are all alone. Click To Tweet
His lies always include a kernel of truth
As with most of his lies, there are bits of truth hidden there. The disease process your loved one is going through may get worse and worse. It may never get better. You may feel weak and weary some days and although your energy level will wax and wane, that will be a truth to deal with. It’s for sure, you are not up to this…especially when you rarely know how long it will last. I guarantee that you will not be able to do it alone or in your own strength!
Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary;
his understanding is unsearchable.
He gives power to the faint,
and to him who has no might he increases strength.
Even youths shall faint and be weary,
and young men shall fall exhausted;
but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
they shall walk and not faint.Isaiah 40:28-31 ESV
The duration of your care taking may go on longer than you planned. There is no way to know how long this journey will last ahead of time…or the twists and turns it will take.
The truth is this: You are not alone, GOD is with you!
But let me share some truth with you as well, that shows up the lie for what it is.
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous.
Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed,
for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
Joshua 1:9 ESV
Whatever we are called to do, GOD is with us, if we are in Christ. That is comforting. HE IS WITH US! Does that sound familiar? Think Christmas. Immanuel. It is one of the names for Jesus. It means GOD with us. If we can think when we sing many of our Christmas carols, it will be very hopeful and encouraging. GOD is with us even during our times of pain, sadness and grief. He is with us when we are called to do something that is beyond our strength and ability.
The truth is Immanuel, GOD is with us! Click To Tweet
“Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son,
and they shall call his name Immanuel”
(which means, God with us).
Matthew 1:23 ESV
He was not detached when He was here on earth. Jesus, the GOD-man, was called the Man of Sorrows in Isaiah 53. He was well acquainted with grief. He lived in poverty all his life and when He died, it was a horrid death on a cross. There was no justice to it. So the truth we can remind the Accuser (Satan), is to remind him that GOD is with us. He is our Immanuel. He walks with us through the hard and difficult.
Situations change. People move in and out of our lives. Support comes at times we need it most.
Another truth is that situations change. Over a period of time, GOD brings different people into our lives who encourage us in different ways. He knows what we need…better than we do. He brings neighbors, friends, church friends, and all kinds of people and situations come along in new and different ways to encourage us and give us hope just when we are ready to give up. Rules change and we qualify for help we didn’t before, someone offers help in a new way. GOD moves in ways we don’t expect. We look back and shake our heads in wonder.
All we can do is thank GOD for His goodness to us. When I think of notebooks, having a gratefulness notebook is a good thing. It helps us remember the many small, seemingly insignificant events that have happened along the way where we saw GOD at work. It may be a person He brings into our life, provision of a ride or meal, a group that didn’t exist before. Whatever it is, it is something we may be tempted to overlook…unless we write it down.
These verses are a reminder of all the changes that happen around us politically that symbolize the many other changes that go on as family members move closer, and friends are freed up to help, friendships deepen, etc.
“Blessed be the name of God forever and ever,
to whom belong wisdom and might.
He changes times and seasons;
he removes kings and sets up kings;
he gives wisdom to the wise
and knowledge to those who have understanding;
Daniel 2:20-21 ESV
This isn’t meant to be a Bible study. It is simply a reminder to be encouraged by the fact that GOD is working all the time in multiple ways. He provides for needs in unexpected ways. He cares for His children by providing support from unexpected sources. He teaches us more and more about how to trust Him to meet our needs, knowing the care we are giving is NOT all up to us. This is a comforting benediction/blessing from which we all can take encouragement.
Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus,
the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant,
equip you with everything good that you may do his will,
working in you that which is pleasing in his sight,
through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.
Hebrews 13:20-21 ESV