Keeping Perspective

Woman enjoying the sunrise

So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.—COLOSSIANS 3:12 (NASB)

My mother, a retired nurse, lay in a hospital bed not long after knee-replacement surgery. Her pain level was high,
but this reluctant patient stubbornly refused to be honest with her nurses.

She was certainly in a daze from her medications, but she was allowed to take additional pain medicine so she could rest and begin to heal. I grew more frustrated each time she refused the help she needed. Every time I told nurses she was in pain, Mom said, “No, I’m fine!” Finally, after several tiring hours of this, I snapped, challenging her. “Mom! The nurses can’t help if you aren’t honest with them!”

She fired back at me, “You don’t need to be here! I don’t want you here!”

It was then I realized Mom had no awareness of what was going on around her. And though her words were drug-induced, they still stung. I felt like a complete failure as her caregiver.

A week later, Mom recovered without any memory of the harsh words we’d exchanged. She was even glad I was there. But I remembered my failure and hoped someday, with God’s help, to become a more patient caregiver.

Today's Prayer:

Lord, when I’m worried, remind me to step back and lean on your love rather than releasing angry words.

Adapted from Strength & Grace: Daily Devotions for Caregivers, a new publication from Guideposts