Finding God While Caring for Aging Parents

By Dianne E. Butts:

worradmu / FreeDigitalPhotos.net


Image: worradmu / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

It can be difficult to watch people we love, like our parents, age. We can feel helpless as we see their health deteriorate. For many, a time has come or is coming when we will need to begin acting as their caregivers. While becoming a caregiver certainly has it challenges, it’s possible caregivers might also be finding God while caring for aging parents.

According to the article “When You’re the Caregiver” in Woman’s Day.com, “an estimated 36 million U.S. households have at least one person who’s a caregiver, and 3 in 10 of them have been doing it for more than five years.”

While care-giving can be challenging, it can also be rewarding. In the same article, Leah Eskenazi, director of operations and planning for the Family Caregiver Alliance: National Center on Caregiving, said, “It can actually improve relationships with parents, create positive memories and foster peace of mind… The challenge is to maintain balance and not lose track of your own needs.”

While in His Ten Commandments God told us we need to honor our fathers and mothers (Exodus 20:12) honoring them does not mean we must sacrifice our health, marriage, or emotional well-being to care for them. It’s okay to ask for help. Some sources where you might find help are:

Jesus told us whenever we care for “the least of these” people (See Matthew 25: 31-46) it is as if we are caring for Him. As you care for your elderly mother or father, you may be the very hands of Christ taking care of them. And as you care for them, you may be surprised to discover that God does just the reverse: uses them to bless you as well, and teach you something more of Him. When this happens, you will know you’re finding God while caring for aging parents.

©Dianne E. Butts. Dianne is a freelance writer, screenwriter, and author. You can visit Dianne at www.DianneEButts.com and on Twitter as @DianneEButts.

See this inspiring video on CBN on the “sandwich generation” and on getting help with elder care for loved ones.

 

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Comments

  1. Dianne, thanks for a timely piece. My sister and I are past this point as our parents died a decade ago but your article is reminiscent of those times. This is a great resource for those who are in this life passage right now.

  2. Yep! That’s us one in our house and others in two cities.
    I much prefer having them here. Long distance is so hard.
    Guess we have a sub sandwich…kids at home…kids at college…parents in our home…and some far away who all need care.
    Great one Dianne! Loved the video too. Having my husbands parents in our house has been such a blessing for our kids.
    Liz

    • There’s a name for those in your position, Liz, and you nailed it. You’re called the “Sandwhich Generation” — caring for both the generation older than you and the one younger than you. God bless you for taking care of them all.

  3. Monicah kariuki says:

    Hi
    I am encouraged this morning to know that I can find God in caring for my mother in law.There are times I have felt overwhelmed by the many demands ,now I know better,there is a reason why I am the one given this opportunity and also the blessings that follow.

    Monicah

    • Thanks for your beautiful thought on this, Monicah. You have a great attitude. May God return to you what you’ve invested in your mothin-in-law’s precious life, full measure, pressed down and running over.

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