Wednesday, February 24, 2021

The Covering


This morning, memories began running through my mind. I was thinking about all those tough spots I've found myself in over the last 12 years or so. Of course, that's just the caregiving years. I've been in lots of tight spots in my 60 years. Some of them were unavoidable, and a few I could have avoided with my own choices. As I let my memory run for a little while, I thought of how God has been so faithful. I was thankful.

David mentions how God was his rock. He talks about it a lot throughout the Psalms. God is a rock we can hide behind. He is a rock we can stand on. He's got us covered no matter what life throws at us. He's solid. He's secure. He's immovable. I love all that about Him. We can trust Him with today.

You know, I usually end each blog with a statement about trusting Him for today, and I always ask you to join me. It's a legit question. He is trustworthy. 

As caregivers, we never know what a day is going to bring. Our normal days have more fluctuations and uncertainties than other people's normal days, you know? In the midst of uncertainties and unknowns, there is a rock Who stands. He's there waiting for us to hide in Him. He wants to provide shelter for us. He wants us to stand on the firm foundation He provides. 

The more I think about it, the more I realize He has truly given us everything we need for life and for godliness. (2 Peter 1:3) What I notice about this scripture is that He has given "everything" we need for life - for living, what we need to survive in the natural realm. But He's also given everything we need to survive and serve Him spiritually. He's got us covered both naturally and spiritually.  

Our natural lives may have shifted a lot in response to caregiving, but our spiritual being stayed put in Him. It may have not felt like that early on. lol. There are times when it feels like everything is shaking - but He remains. He is still our rock to hide behind and to stand on when we are ready.

Today, I will express my thankfulness to God for being that solid rock. I'll thank Him for letting me hide when I need to and letting me climb up high above situations when I can. My meditations will be on how He has been a constant source of comfort, healing, and protection. I'll think about how He (THE God of the nations, God our creator) is my covering. And I will lean into Him with more purpose today as I trust Him to carry me through one more day. Will you join me?


                                                                                                                                           


If you enjoy these devotionals, I have others! I've expanded my bookstore on Amazon. My devotionals are available in Kindle or print format. The new Bible study guides are now available on Kindle and in print! Check out my growing bookstore: 

I also recently opened my own bookstore. I'm presently filling it up with my books - check out the ones I have available in eBook format. You can download them and read them on your phone! Dove's Fire Ministries Bookstore.


Coming soon to both bookstores: 21 Days with the Prince of Peace 


Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Shepherd of My Soul

Chris at Bluff Creek

I almost didn't write a devotion this morning. I know I missed yesterday. My schedule is slowly returning to a weird sort of normal. Lol. I know you understand that it's normal for things to not be normal. As caregivers, we go on with our days trying to always be ready for those unexpected events. We just never know. I decided to give it all I had anyway - and so I sat down in front of a blank screen. I got nothing. 

So, I decided to take a small praise break. My guitar is always nearby, so I picked it up, and as soon as I strummed the strings, a psalm we used to sing in church years ago just sort of popped out. It's a familiar one. Psalm 95:6-7. It gives a call for all to Come, let us worship and bow down, let us kneel before the Lord our Maker. I like that it doesn't exclude anyone - the Lord made us all - caregivers to caregivees, prisoners to guards, parents to children, old and young alike, no one is exempt. He made us all! So the call to worship is all-inclusive no one is denied.

The next verse tells us the why. He is our God, we are the people of His pasture and the sheep of His hand. As I sang this over three or four times I thought about what it meant to be His sheep - His people. A shepherd is all in when it comes to His sheep. He lives, breathes, and dies for the sheep. His goal is to protect them, feed them, and care for them entirely. 

Psalm 23 says that the Shepherd - our Shepherd leads His sheep to still waters and causes them to lie down in green pastures. These are not just any pastures - they are hand-picked by the Shepherd because they are the best for His sheep.

As I sang and my mind ran away with the Shepherd of my soul, I literally felt my tension ease. I found myself basking in His peace. You know, that odd kind of don't-really-understand-it-but-I-like-it peace. gratefulness replaced tension as I focused on the Shepherd and how much He cares for me. My heart began to thank Him for watching out for us as caregivers and for staying with us for our journies. I have no doubt that I can trust my Shepherd.

Today, I purpose to focus on being grateful. I'll turn my thoughts to how He keeps watch over my soul and protects me especially when I am most vulnerable. My meditations will be on how He leads me to the still waters of His Spirit so I can take a refreshing drink, and how He brings me to the spiritual pastures so I can learn of Him and be fed. I will diligently trust Him with my soul today. Will you join me?


                                                                                                                                           


If you enjoy these devotionals, I have others! I've expanded my bookstore on Amazon. My devotionals are available in Kindle or print format. The new Bible study guides are now available on Kindle and in print! Check out my growing bookstore: 

I also recently opened my own bookstore. I'm presently filling it up with my books - check out the ones I have available in eBook format. You can download them and read them on your phone! Dove's Fire Ministries Bookstore.


Coming soon to both bookstores: 21 Days with the Prince of Peace 


Sunday, February 21, 2021

The Good, The Bad, & the Ugly

 


One of the things I love about God is that He never leaves us. I say it a lot, but life never overwhelms Him. It never gets too ugly for Him to continue walking with us. I think that's one of the things that stands out to me in the scriptures. You get the whole story. It's all there, the good, the bad, and the ugly. God never shied away from people who were on the edge. He was always right there with them in the midst of their darkest hours.

Now, I'm in a good place right now. I'm working, Chris is doing good, and I feel pretty good physically. But I still have "those moments." Recently, I've had a difficult time emotionally. It's not anything real bad, just missing Chris. I have to bury who he was every single day. I love who he is too - he's still my son. But my heart aches. I miss his humor, his music, his questions, his personality. You would think after 12 years, it would all go away, right? Nope.

So, I constantly find myself going back to God for strength, for healing, for His touch deep in my aching soul. And you know what? He's always right there. He never tells me that He clocked out at midnight, He doesn't work after dark, or that He's not on the clock. Instead, He walks into the cold, dark recesses of my painful heart. Then, He pours in His healing balm and somehow brings healing to the parts that hurt the most. And He does this day after day. As long as there is pain - there is healing.

I love that God is with us in the good, the bad, and the ugly. he is our strength. He is our song in the night. He is our constant companion who literally cannot leave us. (Where would He go - He's already everywhere!) He gives me the strength to make each day - and that brings me comfort. 

Today, I will encourage myself by reminding myself of how He has walked with me all of these weary miles. There hasn't been a point where it has gotten too rough for Him - or too steep - or too hazardous. He just keeps being with us - always. I will be thankful for His ever-abiding presence today. I'll thank Him for not leaving when the road got rocky or the storm gained strength. I'll be thankful that He's with me in the rocky places and the smooth places. And I will trust Him for today - will you join me?


                                                                                                                                           


If you enjoy these devotionals, I have others! I've expanded my bookstore on Amazon. My devotionals are available in Kindle or print format. The new Bible study guides are now available on Kindle and in print! Check out my growing bookstore: 

I also recently opened my own bookstore. I'm presently filling it up with my books - check out the ones I have available in eBook format. You can download them and read them on your phone! Dove's Fire Ministries Bookstore.

Friday, February 19, 2021

The Great Exchange

 


This morning during my FaceBook live devotion "Peace Out!", I talked about 1 Peter 2:9 and how we can take all of our concerns to God. Nothing is too big for Him to handle, and nothing is too small for His attention. I mentioned that as a caregiver, I take care of all of my son's needs. I don't have a list of exclusions or things I am unwilling to do. I'm invested in him - and see to him from head to toe. God is the same way about us. He wants us to take our cares to Him - all of them.

Just like I take care of my son's whole being - God wants to take care of us wholely. There's no part of Chris I don't take care of. If I don't have the skills (which never happens with God!), then I find someone who does so they can help. 

God is our ultimate caregiver. He cares for us - and He can do the caring for us when we let Him. I love that I can bring Him every little thing that I am concerned about and He won't turn me away or turn me down. He doesn't have a list of cares that are exempt. He never says, really? Or you can't be serious. He takes each of my concerns from the smallest to the biggest. And when I give them to Him, He makes the great exchange. He takes my worry, my concern, and gives me His peace.

And on top of that, He gives wisdom freely - when I ask for it. So, He takes my concern, gives me peace, then fills me with godly wisdom to know how to move forward in each situation. You can't beat that kind of exchange, now, can you? 

Today, I'm going to give God my growing list of concerns. (I've let it build up quite awhile.) I'll give it to Him and then I will let it go. I'll turn my thoughts to how He is concerned with the things that trouble and concern me - and He does truly care about my whole being. My meditations will be on how He takes all my worries and replaces them with peace and wisdom. I'll embrace His peace and His wisdom and trust Him for one more day - will you join me?


                                                                                                                                           


If you enjoy these devotionals, I have others! I've expanded my bookstore on Amazon. My devotionals are available in Kindle or print format. The new Bible study guides are now available on Kindle and in print! Check out my growing bookstore: 
My Bookshelf

I also recently opened my own bookstore. I'm presently filling it up with my books - check out the ones I have available in eBook format. You can download them and read them on your phone! Dove's Fire Ministries Bookstore.

Thursday, February 18, 2021

Cause and Effect

 


We learned about cause and effect in elementary school. As life progressed, we learned it from life lessons. If I don't pay my electric bill - they will shut it off. You know? In scripture, there are lots of examples too. But I want to look at the other side of this coin. 

When the king had Daniel thrown into the den of hungry lions, the effect was supposed to be his death. But God had other plans. He disrupted the cause-and-effect system of man with His own plan. In Jeremiah, God foretold the Babylonian captivity. Then He explained that He had thoughts of peace, and not evil, to give you a future and a hope. He explained that His cause and effect system works like this - you call on Me - I answer. Period. I like that. Sometimes we can get pushed so far back into the caregiver's cave that things like hope, a future, and peace are hardly discerned. The Enemy likes it that way. But God offers hope on top of hope.

Life can throw us some curveballs and caregiving isn't for the faint of heart. We can find ourselves comfortable in the back of the cave. But God's hope disrupts the "natural" flow of what life sets up. You see, the enemy of our soul would like for us to give up there. The devil would like for our caves to destroy us. But God has other plans.

What was supposed to destroy us - birthed us anew.

What was supposed to crush us - squeezed out hope.

What was supposed to steal our peace - brought great joy.

What was meant to be our tomb - has become a womb where we're being formed and birthed into His image.

So what life caused - hasn't had the expected effect. Here we are still seeking God. Still trusting Him. Still waiting on Him. Still getting our strength from Him. Still resting in Him. It's a great place to be. Life's crushing blows can cause His healing, peace, and anointing to flow when I yield it all to Him.

Today, I'll meditate on His plans for me. I'll turn my thoughts to the presence of His peace and how He has stayed in the cave with me until I was ready to come out. My meditation will be on His sustaining power and how He turns the things that were supposed to cause harm - into healing and joy. I will be grateful that God disrupts this world's cause and effect system and turns it to be for us a hope and a future. I'll crawl up in His lap today and let His peace reign even in the cave. Will you join me?


                                                                                                                                                                 



If you enjoy these devotionals, I have others! I've expanded my bookstore on Amazon. My devotionals are available in Kindle or print format. The new Bible study guides are now available on Kindle and in print! Check out my growing bookstore: My Bookshelf

I also recently opened my own bookstore. I'm presently filling it up with my books - check out the ones I have available in eBook format. You can download them and read them on your phone! Dove's Fire Ministries Bookstore.

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

The Right Now


 As if caregiving wasn't enough, we've found ourselves working through a historic pandemic. They can be difficult enough to navigate for families but made even more challenging by caregiving. Now, on top of all that was already going on in our nation and world, a large portion of the US is suffering through brutally cold and bitter temperatures. Utility companies were ill-prepared to handle a severe winter storm of this magnitude. Personally, I've stressed quite a bit over how I would take care of Chris if the electricity would go out. It's frightening to think about.

It can be easy to get sucked into a spiraling cycle of worry right now. And that can be a difficult vacuum for anyone to get out of. When I begin to feel the overwhelm, I go back to basics. I try to stop all the crazy thoughts and focus on truth from the Word. This is why it's so important to read the word. If we are hiding it in our hearts like David said, Holy Spirit will help us recall it when we need it.

This morning as my mind began turning toward spinning out of control, I stopped all the noise. That's not always easy, is it?  I reminded myself that I needed to go back to the basics. Those things that don't change with the weather or in response to a pandemic. They didn't change when my son had a wreck and I was thrust into caregiving over 12 years ago either!

I landed in a familiar go-to scripture. Of course, it's in Psalms! lol. Psalm 46:1 is one of my go-tos. God is our refuge and our strength a very present help in trouble. That's where I started. I reminded myself that no matter what life throws at us - God is present. He doesn't avoid issues. Instead - He marches right into them. We talked about how He went out to "find" Hagar in her despair. He walked right into the fiery furnace with the three Hebrew children. He traipsed across the water to His frightened disciples in the middle of a storm. And He is not afraid or hesitant to walk right into our mess today. Acknowledging that He is with us and that He hasn't abandoned us helps shift our thinking. He is present. Now. 

Today, I'll remind myself that He doesn't shy away from the difficulties. He doesn't disappear when things get tough. My meditation will be on how He chooses to walk right into the mess. I'll let my heart rest in these truths today. I will think about how He goes to the extremes and through extremes to get to us no matter where we are. I'll let His peace reign in my heart as I trust Him for my right now. Will you join me?

                                                                                                                                         



If you enjoy these devotionals, I have others! I've expanded my bookstore on Amazon. My devotionals are available in Kindle or print format. The new Bible study guides are now available on Kindle and in print! Check out my growing bookstore: 
My Bookshelf

I also recently opened my own bookstore. I'm presently filling it up with my books - check out the ones I have available in eBook format. You can download them and read them on your phone! Dove's Fire Ministries Bookstore.

Saturday, February 13, 2021

No Waiting

Me helping Chris stand at the park

This morning, during my private prayer and study time, I began to let thanksgiving have its way in my heart. With this Siberian front coming through it's cold and I am so tired of being cold. But I was so thankful to wake up under a warm electric blanket this morning. And the apartment was bearable but cool. I don't know where it came from, but I just began to thank God for food, clothing, warmth, and plenty of blankets to cover windows to slow down the cold drafts.

Something happened in those moments as I got lost in thankfulness. My perspective changed for one thing. But gratefulness gave way to peace. Peace led me down a path that led to a sense of knowing that He sees. He knows.

I have read, reread, meditated, thought about, hashed, and rehashed the story of Hagar found in Genesis 16. I wish I could have seen the visual difference of her demeanor as she realized God saw her. She was in a rough spot, interestingly enough. Yet what peace must have flooded her heart and mind as she realized God had walked right up to her in the dark and dry place. And He saw her. And she knew it. It's that knowing that warms the heart and lightens the load, isn't it? 

God did not wait until she "got it all together" or was in a better state of mind. He didn't wait until she could think clearly. He didn't tell her he'd come back later when she wasn't having such a difficult time. Her life picture was looking pretty ugly to her at that moment. She was in despair. Sarah has mistreated her. (Genesis 16:6) so Hagar was broken, alone, had no direction, no home, no income....and she was pregnant! 

I love the picture I get in my mind of God just marching right up to Hagar in the midst of the mess. It's similar to the picture my imagination paints of Jesus walking out on the water to His disciples - in the middle of the storm.

God is moved with compassion when we are in tough spots, He isn't put off by it. Jesus waited until the storm was just right - then marched right out on the water to His trembling disciples. The Angel of the Lord waited until Hagar was just alone enough - just desperate enough before He walked right into her situation. This gives me so much hope and peace. I understand I don't have to get it all together for God to visit. He comes when life is the ugliest and brings peace and grace.

Today,, I will be thankful that God seems to like the stormy weather. It's a good thing too! lol. He's not confused, dismayed, perplexed, or put off by our circumstances. Maybe it's the most difficult storms and darkest situations that draw Him to us. My meditations will be on His presence in my storm. I'll welcome a fireside chat with Him today as I ponder about my own circumstances. I'll remind myself that He sees - and He comes anyway. I'll rest right there in the peace that comes with that thought. Will you join me?


Thursday, February 11, 2021

Continuous Delivery


 I got on one of my shopping apps this morning to order a few things for the upcoming blizzard. This is an app I use a lot and order from it almost weekly. I started down through the list I made and ordered each item. When I got done, a notice popped up stating they no longer deliver fire starters. I'll spare you the details, but I was quite upset. Here we are in horribly frigid weather, with dangerous conditions getting worse over the next few days and for some unknown reason (they NEVER give a reason), they decided firestarters could not be delivered. I've ordered them numerous times before. I believe at this point - I will cancel my subscription since this is not the first time it's happened on items I order frequently.

The good thing is that over the last few months as I've prepared morning devotions on peace - I've absorbed some of my own teachings! lol. As upset as I was it only took me a few seconds to settle myself down and let His peace reign in my heart once again. As I reclaimed the peace He gave us all those years ago, I whispered a simple prayer followed by thanksgiving. I said I'm glad You don't stop your deliveries.

That simple thought that turned into a prayer began a deluge of thoughts that took me back to this morning's devotions. I saw Psalm 23 with new eyes as I've been walking this journey of embracing His peace. But what stood out to me as I lifted my concerns over the impending weather conditions was this. Surely goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life.

I'm so glad that God's peace, mercy, goodness, faithfulness, provision, love.... and more - are not regulated by a spout that He turns off at will. He continues to chase us down with mercy, goodness, and more. He doesn't love us until He just doesn't want to deliver anymore, His love has no end - the spout is always open it's up to us to get under it and receive His blessings!

Today, I'm going to picture myself standing under a spout that has a continuous stream of mercy, love, grace, forgiveness, help, faithfulness, peace, and more. I'll thank Him for being my provider, not just for my natural needs but for my soul and spirit needs too. My meditations will be on how He doesn't hold any part of Himself back but continues to give us freely all things. I'll rejoice in His abundant goodness and trust Him for today. Will you join me?

                                                                                                                                            



If you enjoy these devotionals, I have others! I've expanded my bookstore on Amazon. My devotionals are available in Kindle or print format. The new Bible study guides are now available on Kindle and in print! Check out my growing bookstore: My Bookshelf

I also recently opened my own bookstore. I'm presently filling it up with my books - check out the ones I have available in eBook format. You can download them and read them on your phone! Dove's Fire Ministries Bookstore.

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

True Confidence

 


Do you ever have those mornings where you know you have a ton of things lined out to do but you just want to stay under the warm covers a little while longer? Most days, we just can't. Personally, I always regret it later in the day when I don't get as much done as I wanted to. But that is nonetheless where I was this morning. 

Usually, I get up and put on coffee and let it make while I change Chris and bolus him some water. Then, I crawl back into bed with my coffee cup and Bible in hand. Sometimes, I wish I had the choice to sit there all day. But my coffee would run out. And then there's that there is just too much that has to be done - and I'm the only one to do it. lol

While sitting there this morning, I felt my emotions try to take the dive into the caregiver's abyss. The fog was trying to overtake me. But I just don't have time for it today. Like you - I probably just need a day off. But of course, they don't happen. And their rarity is even rarer since the pandemic.

So I sat with my Bible and my coffee looking for a bit of comfort and some scriptures on peace to share in my Facebook live morning devotions. You know, when I purpose to dive into the Word, I am never disappointed. That's one thing I love about God and His Word - He meets me where I am. He is not afraid to walk right into my chaos and infuse His peace. He doesn't give me a checklist to complete before He does it either. I'm afraid I'd never get there if He did that! lol

I ended up my studies this morning in a favorite passage. It's Isaiah 30:15-18. The first part is what stood out to me because it's what I needed most. The prophet Isaiah says, In returning and rest you shall be saved; In quietness and confidence shall be your strength. Well, immediately I knew this confidence was not in myself. It's a confidence that is put in God that gives us the strength to face one more day. 

I'm fairly confident I'm going to make it through today - I've made it through many other days that looked a lot rougher than today, that's for sure. But I have not - and will not- make it through in my own strength. I'm very aware that He carries me at least half the time. That's where my quiet confidence rests.

Today, I will quietly trust Him to get me from daylight to dark with emotions, mental health, and body intact. As I move through this day, I will remind myself that He is my confidence. He is my strength. My thoughts will be on how I can trust Him with even more of the pieces of my heart. I'll let Him carry me through today. I know He will - that's confidence! Will you be in His arms with me today?


Monday, February 8, 2021

Something Like a Monday

 

Chris and me at the park in Norman

It's Monday. I know for myself and many other caregivers, the day of the week doesn't make much difference at all. It doesn't matter, we do the same things every day with a few variations on days with appointments or days we either do or do not have the help. Actually, I was hoping to have something like a Monday to blame this funk on. lol. I hope you can't relate, but I'm pretty sure you do. :-)

It's just one of those days where everything feels out of kilter, but there's no way to get it all back in place. We all have these days, and we all have to just keep putting one foot in front of another and keep on moving. Our loved ones have things that cannot be skipped just because we are in a weird mood. Today (Monday or not) is just like other days with laundry to be done, meals to be prepared, transfers, baths, and you know the list goes on and on. All.Day.Long.

On days like this, I grab an extra cup of coffee. Then, I take a long, deep breath. I sit for a second and go back to the basics. God loves me. I whisper to myself. He hasn't abandoned me. I say a little louder. God cares for me and Chris. Now my eyes begin to sweat as I can finally begin to release the things that are troubling my heart. There are many and they begin to pile up after a while mostly because I forget to pour them out in prayer. 

Days like this are why I encourage daily Bible reading. As I was preparing for my devotions I do on Facebook live every morning, I read in Haggai this morning. It's a short book, but it has a lot of those basics I needed to remind myself of today. In just two short chapters, the prophet Haggai reminds God's people of these basic (but encouraging) truths:

  • Be strong - for I am with you. (2:4)
  • My Spirit remains among you, do not fear. (2:5)
  • I will give peace. (2:9)
  • I will receive you. (2:23)
  • I have chosen you. (2:23)
I am comforted when I remember that God wants to be with me - even when life's picture gets ugly or a storm blows across the sea of life. He still gives me peace, receives me, and even chases me down sometimes. And suddenly, I'm okay. Just to know that He didn't abandon me and He certainly isn't the author of those feelings. Now - I can face today - even if it's something like a Monday.

Today, when I feel overwhelmed, I will turn my thoughts back to these truths. I'll remind myself that He is with me, He comes for me, accepts me, and wants to be with me. I'll take a deep breath and express my thankfulness to Him for being right here - even on a Monday. Will you join me?

Sunday, February 7, 2021

It's ALL Ours

 

Chris standing with my help

This week, I went back and read about the armor of God in Ephesians 6. I'm working on a new study guide about the armor. If you look at each piece it basically boils down to the Word of God. We need the word of God to cover us for our battles. 

Paul was writing to the church at Ephesus and coming to the conclusion of his letter. He says, finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. (NASB) As a caregiver, what I like about this is that there are absolutely no exclusions. Not one phrase indicated any of the believers were left out of the discussion. Thankfully, Paul didn't say, everyone but caregivers put on the armor of God. He didn't say, all of you but caregivers can wear the armor and defeat the devil.  It sounds silly, doesn't it? But it's easy to get caught up in our day-to-day and forget the entire Bible is still ours to claim. Every jot and tittle is applicable to the caregiver's life too - we are never left out!

Paul encourages the Ephesian believers to put on the whole armor of God - it covers from head to toe. Now, as caregivers, we are not left out of scripture, not excluded from any blessing. But we are also not excused from any responsibility. Paul says to put on the armor of God. We still have to do that - God isn't going to dress us with His armor, we have a part to do, actions to take. We are not excluded from the protection God's armor provides, but we are also not excluded from the putting on part.

Nowhere does scripture give instructions and say, unless you are a caregiver. That kind of hurt my feelings early on, you know? I wanted to be coddled just a little bit. :-) But He's got us covered anyway - because repeatedly the word reminds us that He is our strength. So on those days when we really are not sure how we are going to put one foot in front of the other, He's got us covered. He gives us the strength to breathe somedays. You know? (I know you do!) 

Today, I will turn my thoughts to the armor of God and how He uses His word to protect all believers, caregivers included. My meditations will be on how His word protects my whole being and how He gives me the strength to wear His armor when I feel like I am at my weakest. I trust Him to have my front, my back, and everything in between. And I will trust Him for today. Will you armor up and join me?


Monday, February 1, 2021

Strength from Weakness

 

car ride wiwth aunt polly

Have you ever had someone say to you, I don't know how you do it? As a caregiver, I think I'm supposed to take it as a compliment. I usually mutter something like, Oh, we all do what we need to do. Or some other blow-it-off phrase. But what I'd really like to do is yell - I don't know either!  Lol - maybe it's just me.

Caregivers just keep giving and doing day in and day out. We kind of get used to a new normal and get into a groove that makes everything happen. But of course, there are those little kinks. My kink usually starts with a cough. When I hear Chris cough I start making a plan. Do I have all his prescriptions on hand? Is the battery charged on the oxygen thingy? 

Other times it's less worrisome things like this week I ran out of gloves. They were delivered to the office on Saturday - but 1 - I couldn't go get them anyway. And 2 - I didn't know until after office hours. Not having supplies, aids not showing up, delivery services that have no available time slots before the time you need an item or two... these all wear us down!  

So, when someone says I don't know how you do it  (perhaps they should say - without breaking down.) I think - me either. Most days I don't feel like I "do it" well enough. But here's the thing I am learning. There is power in realizing our weaknesses. This morning I was reading in 2 Corinthians 4 where Paul is talking about the Light shining in our hearts and how we have this treasure in an earthen vessel. We are just a clay pot holding the very glory of God.

But Paul goes on to talk about how he was 

  • hard-pressed on every side but not crushed
  • perplexed but not in despair
  • persecuted but not forsaken
  • struck down but not destroyed
We talk a lot about how David poured out his honest, raw emotions before God too. What I like about David and Paul is that they were honest and transparent about their feelings. They weren't afraid to tell God the truth. That open and real expression is an act of worship. It's in those moments of weakness, that we realize His strength. As we pour out our souls and empty ourselves before Him - He fills us back up with His strength. Pauls says in my weakness You are strong.

Today, I will meditate on how God puts His strength in this weak, old clay pot. My thoughts will be on how He takes time to hear my deepest heartfelt cries and listens intently to them as He begins to pour new strength for a new day in. I'll rest right there - and trust Him for just today. Will you join me?