Most deeply supportive relationships develop slowly. More inch- by- inch than mile- by- mile. Sometimes just by a fraction of an inch. But they grow. And deepen. As compassion grows. And understanding. And a feeling of safety.
The most meaningful human relationship I have ever had – outside of my wife and family – began with me taking the lead, inviting someone to share a cup of coffee. Then…and I’m embarrassed now at my boldness…offering my help if he ever needed it. The truth was that I was the one that needed…not so much help… but a friend. Desperately. And the only way I knew how to reach out to meet my need… was to risk offering my friendship. That was over forty years ago. And to this day – though we are now hundreds of miles apart, it is still the safest, most tested , most trusted outside-my-family relationship I can draw on…and to which I can give support and care. And to know that his love and support are there for me.
But what’s the lesson in all that for caregivers? Beyond the need of physical, hands-on help – way beyond – is the need for an emotional “ safe” place. Heart help! Without it, the task you’ve taken on is beyond doing. Instead of our usual closing prayer today, I offer you my prayer that you will find the strength to seek your own “soul friend”. Amen
In Loving Memory
Throughout this month, the Caregiver Prayer Team honors Fritz Benning who passed into the presence of his LORD on December 10, 2016. He was a beloved brother in this ministry and one of our founding partners. We commend his wife and family to GOD’s loving care.
Photo courtesy of Ken Jones, copyright 2016