2 How to be Strong and Courageous in the Lord
2. 1 My Story
One of the first thoughts I had when my wife received the diagnosis that she had stage three Melanoma was how am I going to care for her and love her unconditionally until she dies.
I knew the Melanoma was going to kill her unless God intervened. I wondered if she would follow the doctor’s orders. Would my wife let me help her? How would she react? Could I handle being her caregiver?
In time all the questions were answered. The solutions didn’t happen in one day. There was some give and take. My spouse had to have a heart to heart with me along the way which included telling me to back off and give her some space as I was smothering her with kindness and care.
She didn’t need me reacting as if every little event she encountered was a life or death situation. I learned what she needed was me to be there. She desired my calm, steady presence.
A simple example is when I had a ball game on, and she came into the room I would change channels on the television to her favorite HGTV program. I stayed in the room with her instead of going to the bedroom and continuing the ballgame. If I were cleaning or doing other housework, I would stop, give her my attention and be with her.
In her last days of hospice care, she told me how much my just being there meant to her. She said I could get the house spotless after she was in heaven, but until then she needed the ministry of my presence. She needed me to be strong and courageous as I spent time with her.
2.2 How to Be Strong and Courageous in the Lord
Part of learning to care for a person with a chronic illness understands how to be strong and courageous in the Lord.
Facing caring for a person with a chronic or terminal illness is a scary daily challenge for both the person with the disease, their family and you as the caregiver. Through Jesus Christ, we can be strong and courageous.
How can we do this?
We cannot do this in our strength. Daily the Lord Jesus our God goes with the Christian. We need to remember he goes with us. We need the Lord to strengthen us.
Today’s Scripture tells us the Lord will not leave or forsake the Believer in Jesus Christ.
2.3 Bible Verse
Deuteronomy 31:6 (KJV), “Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.”
2.4 What the Verse Means
Because Christians have God with them, they should be of good courage. The courage comes from their confident assurance in God which faith gives. This sure faith in Christ allows us to face each day bravely knowing through him we shall have the ultimate victory.
2.5 Pray Using Scripture
- Heavenly Father, please help me and my family to continue to be strong and courageous in the face this illness.
- Holy Spirit, I ask for your comfort. Help me to not fear or be in dread of the challenges I face as a caregiver. Help me not to grow weary.
- Thank you for letting me know it is the Lord our God who goes with me and that he will not leave me or forsake me.
- I pray my family and loved ones’ would confess faith in Jesus Christ where they too can experience the comfort available to Christians.
2.6 Responding to God’s Hope
- What are two areas that you are fearful of failing in as you care for your loved one? Name them.
- Take the two items you identified in question one. Admit your fears to God. Ask God for the faith you need to face fear courageously.
- Realize that God has entrusted you already with your loved one’s care. He’s put them under your supervision; God will equip you for the daily challenges you face. Thank God for the confidence He has placed in you, and for the way, He helps you daily as you care for your loved one.
Photo Source: Pixabay
This blog post is from the forthcoming book, “Caregiving: Biblical Insights from a Caregiver’s Journey” by Jimmie Aaron Kepler, Ed.D.
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