Memories of my mom flooded me this month, reminding me of when I took a shower with her and washed her body. She was ill when I was young and too weak to wash herself. Bless her heart, she needed help to preserve her dignity, so I showered with her so she would not fall. Now that I am oldER, I realize how little I knew in those moments of my youth when I thought I knew enough to handle what life dealt me. Cancer wrecked my mom’s body and ultimately wrecked all our lives for a long time. She was a gentle woman and I only knew her for 17 years of the over 50 I have lived. I remember wanting to love her but did not know how…I hardened my heart to protect myself but instead what it did was prevent me from loving or being loved. I’m confident I’ve written about my mom before but today, I have a fresh nuance – a moment of light shed into that memory and now those memories are precious and I know today is important.
Not a Baby, But a Woman
The last couple weeks, a wonderful woman has been staying with us and she needs additional help due to a weakened arm and short term memory loss. She did not ask for the bill of goods that came down her pipeline and I’m doing my best to do my best but I admit this is not my cup of tea or strength in life and I’m just crying out to God that she does not get hurt or stumble or fall on my watch. Needless to say, my heart watches and I wish I was superwoman and that this was not difficult but honestly, it is and I’m thankful for the woman who cares for her regularly. I’m thankful for her insight, her understanding, her wisdom, her life and the way she cares for those she cares for and you bet if something were to go down with me I would want input from her! Back to the woman I’m sharing about – in order to safeguard her body, I’ve been washing her in the shower. She strained her left arm and when you are left handed, that poses a problem. She is weaker in her body already just due to the ravages of life and so I’m watching to make sure she is not straining her right arm too. She forgets her left arm is strained and she attempts to use it and so I’m constantly aware of her movements. What does this mean? It is almost like caring for a baby but she is a grown woman…so that means I get wet when I’m attempting not to get wet. It means I have to be on my toes because she has stability issues already without the weak arms. It means her bowels are loose like a baby too and that means clean up time for her and ultimately for me too. As I wash her buttocks and her legs and her back for the 5th time within a week, I think of my mom and the opportunity God had given me to love her…but alas I chose not to do it. Yes, I washed my mom but my feelings were not engaged and so I missed that season of loving her and being loved by her. In her weakened state, she was still my mom and I was still her daughter. Today, I do not have a profound message of grace or peace or mercy. Instead, I have a call out to you and to me to love and be love and to find memories are precious and that my today and your today is important.
I don’t know where you are in life. It seems when we are inconvenienced, God has something to say if only we will listen and make room for His voice. Honestly, that does not always mean 3 hours in a prayer room or 2 hours in the Word or even 30 minutes of meditation. Sometimes, God simply speaks and we need to listen for His voice, His tenderness, His kindness, His touch. It is not so much about our effort (though we must receive) but it is about His effort which He extends intentionally. There is a passage in the New Covenant that talks about how the lovingkindess of God leads us into a change of mind…a change of heart…a change of understanding. It is a change where we understand more about how He cares and how we are purposefully included in His caring plan for us and the planet.
Pray with me:
Father, I need You this day to help me #BEBRAVER and live out life with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, self control. LOVE through me today! LOVE THOSE AROUND ME! LOVE ME! CHANGE ME! Let me pass every test. Let me enjoy others and be thankful for the presence of those around me. In Jesus name, today is Important!
To be continued…
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Until next time,