“Stop letting circumstances write your story.” – John Gray

The above was an excerpt from John Gray, associate pastor of Lakewood Church, a great line to remember when circumstances are getting a bit challenging. Being a caregiver can be quite challenging, to say the least, particularly when the one you are caring for is getting worse. My mother’s dementia condition is progressing, and I am doing what I can to come to her aid. She is now in rehab, being moved there from the hospital as a way to get her stronger and more steadily mobile. So far she is going along with that, but mentally she has regressed to the late ’70’s, asking me if I drove from Ohio to come see her. During that time I was in college, and I attended Wilberforce University that is located in Ohio. I have learned from past experience not to correct her, as that doesn’t help the situation. Instead, I just go with the flow, and continue on with the conversation. As she has progressed in her condition, I have progressed as well.

I have learned that being in a tough situation can result in going in one way or another. Back in October, 2015 I didn’t know up from down when my mother started talking like she had been on a drug binge. I didn’t know what to do and I felt like my world was falling apart. But eventually, I had to make a decision if I was to remain in that way of living, or try something that would cause me to be on more steady footing. I chose the latter.

The next step was determining how I was to achieve that. Since my mother’s diagnosis days have turned into weeks, months, and years, and what I have learned is when God throws out an invitation to offer help, you’ve got to take Him up on His offer. In what seemed to be the darkest of nights, I had a heart to heart with my Father. First asking for forgiveness for not coming to the throne of grace sooner and asking for help. So many days and nights my head was spinning endlessly, trying to figure out solutions to helping my mother, and keeping myself sane in the process. When I finally came to God in faith (pistis) believing that He could take the my mental reigns and my mother’s circumstance, the peace flowed, and my head got emptied of endless thinking of what to do. The attempt to be in control of a circumstance that you really have no control over  doesn’t help, as it causes confusion, depression, and endless worry that is coupled with the ‘what-ifs’ that further complicate matters. Your attention or emphasis is not on God, but on self.

In the fourteenth chapter of Matthew, Peter was doing great when he took Jesus’ invitation to walk on the water with Him. But when his attention turned to the elements that caused the storm and the boat to be tossed to and fro, he began to sink (a complication of matters). No longer was he able to do what Jesus was doing by walking on water. But I have to give Peter credit. Before he drowned he remembered two words that caused Jesus to reach out and handle the situation: “Save me.”  Immediately, Jesus caught him, but also asked him why he doubted him in the first place as they went back to the boat.

And so I have learned to ask for anything and everything, but in faith believing. My level of pistis does not have to be huge, as Jesus told his disciples that one can have the faith of a grain of a mustard seed (the seed is 0.039 to 0.079 inches in diameter, so imagine how small a grain of that is) and say to the mountain be removed, and it shall be done.

So whatever circumstance you find yourself in, strive not to dwell in it, but find a Source that can guide you to inner peace while waiting on the divine solution. And then witness how God writes your story.

 

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