Did you ever have a day where you felt totally overwhelmed by your situation? Maybe it's just me, but there are days when I get up and just don't feel like facing all the commotion. Caregiving isn't like just having a job - we can't call in to work and say we are not coming. Maybe David had some sort of sense of the oppressive forces at work when he said in Psalm 17:9 that the wicked oppress me and the deadly enemies surround me. Caregiving is an all-consuming situation. You're all-in like it or not! And for many of us there isn't a break in sight with no one to lighten the load. Now I know we can adjust to our lives and everyday is not a huge burden. But what do we do with those days where we do feel overwhelmed? I think verse 8 has our answer. David penned:
Keep me as the apple of Your eye
Hide me under the shadow of Your wings...
That's my heart's desire on good days and bad. I just want to know that God still sees me and that He is still walking through the fire with me. Someone asked me yesterday, how do you know God loves you? My answer was simple - He hasn't left me yet. Even when I've been angry at Him about the situation, He can handle the big stuff and the hard questions. He has stayed with me through the fight (even the one I put up).
I think the heart of this scripture could be summed up this way: God, cherish me in my trouble! Value me even in my distress! It can be easy when caregiving takes over our lives to feel like we have lost value. For me, it meant feeling like I was no longer an asset, but a liability or a burden to others. But you know what? We are all valuable to Him. We are cherished, loved and adored by our God, no matter what type of situation we have found ourselves in.
It's important to note that the psalmist's request to be valued during the fight is reciprocated by God. In Proverbs 7:2 Solomon (David's son by the way) says to keep the Word of God as the apple of your eye. We should value the Word of God just as much as we desire to be valued. And as we value His word, and alter our lives to match it - we will find that we are highly favored of the Lord. Nothing about the way he values us changed when we became caregivers!
God never changes his promises or His conditions based on our circumstances. He will always love us. He is always with us. He still requires holiness from us. There are no exclusionary statements or exemptions handed out for caregivers! We will always be the apple of His eye. We will always be cherished and loved by our Father.
Today I will meditate on the truth that He will not leave me alone in the struggle. He is with me and He not only loves me deeply - he values and cherishes me. My goal is to reciprocate that to Him; to cherish and value Him above everything else. Will you join me?
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