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Ups and Downs

One year ago I went and got my aunt. I knew I was bringing her up to Oklahoma for good. She did not. Over this year she has declined but is still doing pretty good. The day I went to get her I became a full-time caregiver for two. It was difficult and I would do it for several months before she would need more care than I could provide. It was a difficult decision but best for her safety. I remain a full-time caregiver for my son and provide long-distance caregiving for my aunt. It's definitely made for a rocky year - especially emotionally. But I know I'm singing to the choir! :-)

I have been reflecting on this past difficult year over the last few days so the scriptures I found this morning were particularly relevant to my life. I had looked up a verse a friend shared with me yesterday so my Bible was opened to Psalm 107. I found myself reading verses 23 to 32 over a few times. the psalm is about giving God thanks for His works of deliverance according to the subtitle. These few verses are talking about those who do business in ships.

The psalmist describes the rocky seas and the fears of those who travel through the storms. But it says God delivers them from trouble and distress. It talks about how the waves rise and fall abruptly. Those in the ship are scared and rightly so! I thought about how the lives of caregivers can be like the rising and falling of the waves. All.Day.Long. And sometimes through the night - up and down!

Meditating on this passage reminded me of one out of Mark4. Jesus was asleep in the boat when He and His disciples came across a storm that rocked their world. He had told them they were going to the other side. When they woke Jesus up He said three simple words. Peace Be Still. Then He turned to them and asked Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith? After they saw what Jesus did and how He calmed the storm, it says they feared exceedingly and asked, who can this be, that even the wind and the sea obey Him? They were more afraid of Him than they had been of the storm.

I don't know about you but I need a storm-calmer in my life. Daily. He may need to do it over and over and over every single day. But He is always right there to reduce the effects of the winds of caregiving. Many fears can arise. He can dispel them. We face problems, lack, emotions, and crazy situations only caregivers can understand. But each time, when we turn to Him He speaks calm and peace into the situation. Sometimes it's multiple times in a day. But He's right there for us - whenever we need Him. He provides peace and calm in our storms.

Today, I won't be afraid to ask Him to speak peace into the storms. My thoughts will be on trusting Him in the midst of rocky circumstances. I'll meditate on His peace and how I can embrace it more fully. I'll remind myself that the rocky periods don't last forever - there is a caregiver's normal. lol. I'll trust Him with my heart and my emotions today as I pursue Him and His peace. Let's do what Paul said - Let His peace reign in my heart. Will you join me?

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