“Summing it all up, friends, I'd say you'll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious - the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse.” Philippians 4:8 MSG
Thoughts for Today
Aging may bring the loss of mobility, sight, hearing, independence, cognitive ability, friends and loved ones, and other cherished abilities and treasures. Each of us has a choice how we will react to these losses.
We might choose depression, becoming overwhelmed with a sense of being not only useless but also a burden to others. We might choose anger and resentment because of the loss of control and independence. However, if we choose to dwell on what we no longer have or no longer can do, then we will miss the great opportunities still open to us.
On the other hand, although it is normal to grieve our losses, we can choose to concentrate on the relationships, abilities and opportunities that are still ours.
These words from Paul can be an encouragement to us as we go through the aging process ourselves or care for our parents: “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength.” Philippians 4:12-13 NIV
It is important not to focus on losses, but to concentrate on Jesus, knowing that he will enable us (and our parents) to still serve him—and to bless others.
Lord, help me to dwell on the positive in this season of my life: the good, not the bad, what I can do, not what I am unable to do. Guide my parents to focusing on the positives in their lives. I thank you that we can do all things through Jesus. In Jesus’ name …
These thoughts were drawn from…
Caregiving: Caring for Aging Parents by Charles Puchta. The purpose of this study is to provide hope and direction to those concerned about the health and well-being of aging parents or an ill spouse or relative. It addresses predominate issues most families face. Note: This curriculum was written especially for small groups and we encourage people to use it that way. However, it can also be used effectively as a personal study for individuals or couples.
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