SHEPHERD TO SHEEP
CARING FOR THE CAREGIVER
(Heb 6:10) For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister.
When a person has a long term illness your heart really goes out to them. You do what you can to help them and for sure you keep them in your thoughts and prayers. But for every person that has an ongoing sickness or disability there is at least one or more persons that takes care of him or her. They serve ongoing and so often without a break. They serve willingly and they serve modestly and without recognition. For these we need to turn our attention to how we may care for the caregiver. And if you are a caregiver you need some encouragement because what you do is amazing and will one day be rewarded by the Lord Himself (Mat 25:21).
There are different types of caregiving in terms of who a person takes care of. It could be an elderly mother or father, a person with a disability, someone on hospice, etc. But one thing is common…a caregiver serves day in and day out. They rarely have any time off. Their whole life is devoted to the care of their loved one, friend, or person they are caring for. They are depended on, and if they weren’t there then the ailing person would suffer for it. The caregiver maintains the life and dignity of the person they serve. They have learned every intricate detail that could never be written down in full for someone else. These are unsung heroes who need:
1) ENCOURAGEMENT: Just a word of appreciation for their work goes a long way to boost their spirits and to keep them inspired in the work they do. God is not unjust to forget their labors and neither should we be neglectful to recognize their undying devotion.
2) REST: The caregiver gives constantly but to avoid burnout they need a break now and then. (Gal 6:2) Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. We can do this by offering help so they can finally get to the things they need to do for themselves.
3) GOD’S COMMENDATION: Some scripture verses are in order so the caregiver will realize how much the Lord appreciates what they are doing: (John 15:13) Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends…(Mat 25:40) And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’…(Isa 40:31) But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.
Our society has it all wrong. We celebrate the celebrities and bypass those who are the real superstars. For those who give care we applaud what you are doing for others. You are an inspiration more than you know by your selfless service so we may serve more nobly for Christ.