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Daily Devotionals

Day 4 – Issue 21

todayMay 1, 2015 10

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Be Still Know

1 Timothy 5:8 NLT

But those who won’t care for their relatives, especially those in their own household, have denied the true faith. Such people are worse than unbelievers.

Nearly two years ago, Mum asked if she could move in with us. After eleven years on her own, following Dad’s death, the challenge of running her flat and managing life was becoming a struggle. We agreed and together we found a more rural location which gave Mum a garden, birdsong and the security she wanted. Learning to live together has not been easy, yet it has been rewarding. Rewards are not easily won, so there has been a measure of struggle for each of us to unearth them.

In a society that uses the word [itals]aged[end itals] as a synonym for ill, there is little patience or appropriate provision for the aged. We create rest homes or nursing homes, depending upon the degree of need, and assume everyone wants to be institutionalised in their final years. Mum has spent two weeks on respite care while Jayne and I took a holiday. It was a nice home and excellent service, yet she came away exhausted from resisting the demands that she join in well-intentioned activities. It was assumed she’d be better off participating than not. The intention was good, yet it was built upon a false assumption.

Paul directs the Christian to provide for relatives, and I take that to mean more than alleviate financial needs. It is to provide for their complete wellness. Yet, for some families there are no relatives, for others fractured relationships or abusive histories. Who is my relative? might be my question to God.

If family begins at the foot of the cross when I enter into friendship with God and with my neighbour, where there is neither slave nor free, Jew nor Greek, male nor female, then do I carry a responsibility for my Christian relatives, known and unknown? Of course, I’m related to a global family whose size is too great for a personal response. Yet with a little imagination and creative thought, we the Church might find appropriate ways to respond to Paul’s injunction.

QUESTION: Are there elderly people you know to whom you might offer your support?

PRAYER: Lord, may those who lived long in this life not be forgotten or left alone.

Written by: Matt Weet

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