The feeling can often come and go, but there are times where it feels like it just swallows me whole. Last night was one of those times. I really am not sure I have the words to adequately express what it feels like because it's a lot more than just feeling lonely. I feel totally alone in this world, on my own, and unlike everyone else. Even among caregivers our situations are so unique we can still feel alone. This was still on my mind when I woke up this morning and opened my Bible for morning devotions.
I wasn't looking for anything in particular and my Bible opened at John 14 so I started reading this passage that has been a long time favorite. Firstly, I love Thomas, even though the church has given him a bad rap over the years. Jesus says I am going to prepare a place for you...I will come and get you so you will always be with me where I am. Then He says You know where I am going and how to get there. Thomas is so honest - he says, No, we don't know, Lord. We don't have any idea where you are going, so how can we know the way?
Don't you love his honest expressions? How many times have we asked where are You, Lord? And how many times have we felt like we didn't have a clue where He was, where He was going or what He was doing? This can seriously be a daily thing for the caregiver!
Since I wasn't looking for any answers, and not expecting to find them anyway I continued reading until I stopped after reading verses 15 to 21. Jesus is explaining how He will be sending Holy Spirit to live in us. The Spirit is with the disciples, Jesus explains; but He will be in them. He assures them they will not be abandoned. My thought is I've felt that way. There have been times when I've felt like I was abandoned by life and God.
But Jesus assures the disciples that He is with them - and His Spirit will continue to live in them and they will not be alone. The catch? They will have to look for Him. He's there... He's everywhere. The world will not recognize Him or receive Him. Why? They are not looking for Him. (v.17)
This made me stop and think for a few minutes. Do I recognize Him in my life? More than that, can others recognize His work in my life? Do I acknowledge His ever abiding presence; or just go about my day hoping He is following along? According to scriptures He is always with us; always in us. And even though it might not make that aloneness go totally away - it does bring some comfort to know He is walking this out with me, with us.
Today I will purposefully look for Him as I go about my busy day of caregiving. I'll watch for His touch as the day goes by. My thoughts will be on how He interacts with me throughout the day and how I can recognize that, rather than ignore the truth that He is here. I'll be looking for Him today - will you join me?