What I’ve learned from trying to live James 1:27 every day {Personal}

Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this:
to visit orphans and widows in their affliction,
and to keep oneself unstained from the world.
{James 1:27}

I have a feeling that this little collage will be used for years to come to sum up a good 6 years of my life. It’s something I hardly ever talk about unless someone asks. But once I’m given the opportunity to share, there’s a good chance I won’t shut up.

The year was 2006. I was a senior in high school. My parents and I moved in with my then 87 year-old grandmother to take care of her. We’d been taking care of her for years, but she’d gotten to the point where she absolutely couldn’t live alone anymore. She was losing her eyesight and her dementia was getting worse.

If any believing woman has relatives who are widows,
let her care for them.
Let the church not be burdened,
so that it may care for those who are truly widows.
{1 Timothy 5:16}

Through a long road of watching my grandmother revert back to her childhood and become like a toddler in a big-person’s body, I’ve learned a lot of lessons I wouldn’t trade anything for. You’ve never experienced the grace of God in one of its sweetest forms until you’ve had to change an adult diaper. I’m serious. There are things I never ever thought I could do. And really, I never ever could if it wasn’t for the grace of God.

So here we are. 2012. She’s been completely bed-bound for two years now. Ensure has been her only form of sustenance for years on end. Her heart rate is healthier than ours and she’s never had a bed sore. The Lord preserves the faithful for sure. {Psalm 31:23} Though she might not remember who we are or who she even is, she has never forgotten her Savior. She can still quote the 23rd Psalm. She still sings hymns. She’ll still let out a “hallelujah” every now and then. He is faithful.

Caring for a family member at home is not what everyone is called to do, but the Lord has called my family and I to do that for my grandmother. If He calls you to it, He will bring you through it. We have the everyday joy (don’t misunderstand me…it’s sometimes hard to find the joy in it) of living out James 1:27 in our home. A lot of times, people put emphasis on the orphan part of that verse and snip out the widows. Widows are there, too. Don’t neglect them!

There’s a lot more to our story than this and I’m always willing to share if you want to hear about it. But if there’s one lesson I have learned through every changed diaper, every forgotten name, every repeated story, every milkshake given, every hymn sung, I’ve learned that the Lord is faithful and He will always~always~always~supply the grace that we need.

But He said to me,
“My grace is sufficient for you,
for My power is made perfect in weakness.”
Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses,
so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
{2 Corinthians 12:9}

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One thought on “What I’ve learned from trying to live James 1:27 every day {Personal}

  1. Pingback: one thousand gifts {#1214-1251} | Sarah Caroline

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