Sunday, December 20, 2015

Caregiving Decisions

Note:  This post is aimed toward those who feel  convinced they need to take care of a loved one at home and are experiencing opposition from well meaning family and friends. Every caregiving situation differs. If your heart tells you that you can't care for your loved one at home, please understand that there is no disgrace in finding a suitable long term care solution, in fact, when a patient's needs have escalated, this becomes the kindest and safest solution for all. As one nursing home administrator told me, "We have a staff of 40 people. You are just one person. We can do a good job for your mom."  Mom is still at home with me, but at the point I can no longer meet her needs, she will be blessed by nursing home care. 

 If you are prayerfully led to take care of someone whose suffering can be alleviated by your service, be cautious about how to proceed as you face criticism and complaints from those who fear there will not be enough of you to go around. It is difficult to face down naysayers, but God is our help, and we must realize that if we turn away from a Holy Spirit fueled desire to provide care for someone we love, heartache will result.

The Biblical book of Esther tells of a young woman who was called to serve her people in a difficult way. When she attained the position as queen according to God's plan to deliver His people, she balked at the danger fulfilling this call would bring to her. Her kinsman, Mordecai, was strict with her: "For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father's house will perish. And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?"  When God has placed a call on our lives to minister to those who are suffering, there will be fears to face and answers to provide to those who don't understand.

Yes, we need to take care of ourselves, we need to be prudent, and we should take into account the needs of other people who depend upon us. But we must not allow fears, our own or those of those who love us, to derail us from service that God has called us to fulfill. Our Lord is able to meet the needs of our loved ones either through us or in some other way. What is important is that we pray through to peace about every decision we make that impacts the lives of those who are no longer able to speak for themselves. 

These posts may help you if you are in the process of making caregiving decisions for a loved one: 

Caregiving Decisions: Pray Through to Peace

Making Decisions for Dementia Patients: A Christian Perspective

Right Where I'm Supposed to Be


  1. Thank you Linda and Merry Christmas. I will print this out for my mother who is caring for her sister at this time. ~ Abby

  2. This was very good. My dad kept my mom at home and it was not easy. Thankfully we had Hospice the last 4 months. I drove down every weekend to help out and I could see how hard it was for my dad. But I also say how important it was for him. I continued to go down weekends after she passed from Alzheimers. I am glad I did because after a couple of years he got sick and I was able to stay with him the last few weeks of his life, also with the help of Hospice. It is so hard to see your parent die but for me so worth it to be there when they passed away. But I do understand that not every situation is the same and a care facility is also a great alternative.

    1. I am encouraged by your feeling that it was "so worth it" to be with your parents at the end of their earthly lives. This blesses me as I'm likely to have a similar story to share at some point. Thanks so much for taking your time to comment, Susan.