What Do You See Outside YOUR Open Window Today?

What Do You See Outside YOUR Open Window Today?
Remember: "When God closes a door, He always opens a window!" You never know what might be out there waiting for you!

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Serving With Grace

A place of grace and peace in our Memorial Garden

At the beginning of this year I selected my One Word for 2016...GRACE. (Click HERE for more about that) , and since then I have been noticing all the different forms of grace that God has demonstrated in my life.

Right now I am being tested in the area of "Serving with Grace".  I won't go into all the details, but let me just say that being a caregiver for loved ones and/or friends with physical and/or emotional issues can be very trying and draining. The one thing I am realizing the most is that if I don't maintain my own physical/emotional/spiritual stamina, it doesn't take much to throw me over the limit of my endurance.

How can one maintain her physical/emotional/spiritual stamina when circumstances beyond her control keep pulling away at her reserves faster than she can refuel?  Here are some ideas on this:

  1. Recognize the signs of exhaustion.
  2. Look for opportunities to rest...take a quick nap, short walk, read a book, go outside and get some fresh air. Look at or tend to flowers/plants.
  3. Ask others to take over for a few minutes while you do something for yourself.
  4. If other helpers aren't readily available, then take advantage of the moments when the one you are caring for is napping or quiet. Put on some pleasant music that is soothing for them and you and let it soothe you both.
  5. Start the day spending time in God's Word and prayer. It doesn't have to be long periods of time or reading. Read a daily devotional, a psalm, something from the Gospels or Epistles...or Proverbs.  Words that uplift, encourage and comfort.
  6. Whisper prayers throughout the day...for yourself, your patient, your family, others around you.
  7. When you get the opportunity, do things you enjoy...a hobby, cooking, writing, reading, photography, sewing, knitting, whatever relaxes you.This is being written for my benefit as well as yours.  In order to serve with grace, I must first be full of grace.  This can only come from being tuned into the grace of the Lord...by being filled with His Spirit, and by resting in Him.

This past week I had the opportunity to take a friend to a doctor appointment. We were both feeling pretty exhausted...she from health issues, me from not getting a full night's sleep...and as we were coming down on the elevator we saw a sign inside the elevator car that spoke to both of us at the same time.  I've been trying to memorize this verse all week because it truly ministered to me at that moment:

"I will both lie down in peace, and sleep;
For You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety." 
Psalm 4:8

I knew as soon as I saw this that it would be a verse that would soon be committed to memory...or else it would be written on a sign and put above my bed...(I've put my order in to my son, who is a sign-maker...so when he gets around to it I will post a picture of it...but that may be a while) 

Perhaps this is a verse that you need to learn as well! How many of you have sleep issues...or feelings of anxiety or fear due to living alone or in adverse conditions?  Psalm 4:8 might be for you as well.

"Lie down in peace and sleep....and dwell in safety."
Good Night.


  1. The Psalms are so comforting. That one is a keeper and I hope your son comes through sooner rather than later. In the meantime, Just put it on a piece of paper so you can read it each night. Lovely.

    1. THank you Terri. Yes, it has been comforting to me all week since I discovered it. That was a "grace" moment...who would think it would be on the wall of an elevator in a building full of doctor's offices? God knows exactly WHAT we need and when we need it. Praise God!

  2. Oh, Pamela, I certainly needed to read this. I felt so overwhelmed as I lay in bed last night - about Mom and Mandy. This is am excellent post for those of us caring for a loved one. Have a blessed Sunday, my friend.

    1. I am so glad that this message found its way to you. I truly understand what you are going through. We have had a very difficult time with my MIL lately (this weekend in particular), and so this was written to help me and all my fellow caregivers. There may be more to come later. God is "on a roll"...

  3. Whispering prayers throughout the day is the only way I survive day to day living. I enjoyed your post, great tips for caregivers and counselors. Hope you have a blessed and happy day.

    1. I just listened to the song "Whispering Hope" as we are preparing for our church service...and then I saw your comment about "whispering prayers"...kind of the same, huh? Whispering prayers is definitely a form of "whispering hope". Something we all need in our lives. Thank you for your confirmation today.

  4. Good advice and wonderful photos!

    Love the sleep and peace verse...It hit the spot.

    1. Thank you Sandi. That verse seems to be resonating with many today. Something we all need...sleep...and peace!!! Praise God, with HIM, this is possible!!

  5. Great post, Pam. The psalms are full of comfort, praise, worship, and so much more. It's not always each to serve, especially in the role of caregiver--good self-care is so important.



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