I was thrust into caregiving when my son was in a tragic accident but soon found that there's a whole world of "us" out there! Many times we find ourselves alone. Even the church can disappear quickly and good friends distance themselves because our world has changed. But God does not change with circumstance. My faith is what has carried me through and these devotions will hopefully help us all make one more day - encouraged in Him.
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In the Experience
Today, I'm still in the story in Matthew 14. Here's my question for today. After Jesus scraped Peter off the water and put him back in the boat, then the storm calmed. NKJV says the winds ceased. Then, the next verse says they worshiped Him, saying, "Truly You are the Son of God." Was it Jesus' dramatic rescue of Peter? Or was it that the storm stopped once Jesus got in the boat with them? He is the Prince of Peace after all.
Either way, now all of a sudden they see Him for who He is. That's interesting to me because if you thumb back through the previous chapters you'll see he's already fed 5000 with a few loaves of bread, healed a man with a withered hand, made a mute man speak, healed two blind men, and set to demon-possessed men free from their torment. None of those times did the disciples worship Him and recognize Him for who He was.
Why do you think that was? Hadn't they seen all these miracles? Or at least heard about some of them? Yet when He gets in their boat and calms the storm, they truly SEE Him. I think it's because all of a sudden it affected them. They had seen blind eyes and deaf ears open - perhaps they rejoiced. But it wasn't them. They saw the demon-possessed be freed. But it wasn't them. They saw Jesus bless the loaves and feed 5000+ with basketfuls left over - but it wasn't them.
Now that He's in the boat, now that He calmed their fears - they could see. It was their souls in jeopardy and they were in the direct line of a miracle. It made all the difference. You might say that Jesus healed the blindness in their soul. Even though they witnessed all the other miracles - this was their experience. They saw. They felt. They knew.
Sometimes, we just don't get it until He walks into our experience. Until He calms the storms affecting our souls, sometimes we just can't see Him. Remember Hagar? When God walked into her tumultuous life, she said - He's the God who sees. She got it. (Genesis16) When Hagar knew God heard her - She said He's the God who hears. (Genesis 21) Those times in between, she had to trust that He was still right there working on her behalf.
Today, I'll remind myself that God is in my "here." I will turn my thoughts to all I've seen Him do through the years, and I'll trust that He continues to work on my behalf. As I go about my day today - I'll purposefully LOOK for Him to be in my situation. I'll wait on Him and ask Him to calm the storm blowing in my heart. Will you join me?
Maybe it's just "that time of year" for me, but I've struggled a lot the last few weeks. I still affectionately call it the caregiver's fog. Lol. Okay, maybe it's not-so-affectionately. I know I can share my true feelings with you guys because you get it. You understand the day-to-day grind of caregiving. The military has a saying about there being no easy day. I think we live in that reality. It's just not easy caring for another whole person, is it? Caregiving presents many difficulties. We can find ourselves alone, so very alone on this journey. It doesn't just go away. We don't just work through it. It seems to go on and on. There are lots of ups and downs - and that can be about every 90 seconds some days. Right? (smile!) As I've been working through this emotional maze the last few days, I turned my thoughts to Daniel. Let's take a realistic look at his circumstances because as we read his story in the Bible, we tend to glamorize i
This morning, I found myself reading in Isaiah 28. I ended up there because I was looking for something in particular, and even though I didn't find what I was looking for, I found what I needed. God's so cool like that, isn't He? My eyes first fell on verse 29, which says in the NKJ: This also comes from the Lord of hosts, Who is wonderful in counsel and excellent in guidance. I rolled that over in my mind and heart a few times and spent a few minutes thinking about how I'd seen His counsel in action in my own life. We've all had those times when we weren't sure what to do or where to go, and suddenly, an idea drops into our thoughts. There are many ways He provides direction for us. He may direct our steps through a passage of scripture, a trusted spiritual leader such as a pastor, a YouTube teacher, and maybe even a lowly blog writer. Lol. No matter how He chooses to deliver His counsel, it comes - but we must listen. After I had rolled these thoughts and t
Over the last few weeks, I've been trying to strategize ways of dealing with stress. It's something we all deal with, especially caregivers. I'm walking and exercising more, which helps the body get rid of stress and it helps improve sleep to some degree. But I've also been working on training my thoughts. I've been working on purposefully finding things to be thankful for. At first, it was a bit difficult because let's face it, caregiving is hard work. This morning, I was plugging Chris into a nebulizer for a breathing treatment as he had an asthma attack yesterday afternoon after we'd been out for a little bit. As I was doing his treatment and his tube feeding, I didn't even really think about it; this "thought" just rolled up out of me. I thought, thank you, Lord, for carrying us through the long night. My own thankfulness surprised me! Lol. I realized at that moment that it's getting easier and easier to be thankful, even for the litt
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