This past week I found out that my grandmother’s living situation is changing. She has dementia, and because she’s moving with my aunt and uncle closer to us, my family is going to become more regularly and directly involved in her care. In fact, she is coming to stay with us in February for a week.
I remember the last time she lived with us. I sometimes got irritated with her, for example when she turned up the TV really loud at night. But now I’m a little older, and have a little more perspective. I think God is asking me to be much more compassionate with her.
The shoe is now on the other foot, because it’s the same kind of love that she modeled when her husband and my grandfather was in a nursing home with dementia for the last few years of his life. He could not hold a steady conversation or give much back in general, yet she faithfully and lovingly visited him each day in the nursing home. Some of those days involved playing games and fun activities at the nursing home. Most of those days involved simply sitting in his room to watch TV with him.
I will now be in the position to extend the same kind of love that she did for her husband. Here’s how I want to love her well as she stays in our home:
- To be patient in chaos and confusion
This is an opportunity to practice the same kind of patience that God has with me.
- To be intentional with the limited time I have with her
It’s not every day that I can drink coffee and chat with her. She has so much wisdom that my almost 20-year-old mind can learn from.
- To be kind
This sounds so simple, yet the most ordinary acts of kindness can be the most extraordinary.
In this second chance I want to extend this kind of love because it’s how I’m loved by Jesus. His love is selfless, steadfast, gracious, and faithful. He lavishes His love upon me in the midst of my sinful nature.
Christ’s love has nothing to do with my performance but everything to do with grace. There is nothing I have done to deserve God’s love, yet His love for me is beyond what I can imagine.
“May our love always be a result of Jesus’ love for us—a reminder that we are HIS.” (She Reads Truth).
Question: What kinds of people in our lives are most difficult to love? Is our response to think of ways to build bridges to them, or to avoid loving them?