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One of the hardest parts of being a member of the Baby Boomers Generation and the Sandwich Generation dealing with the issues of caring for elderly parents is the process of dealing with their illnesses and eventually with their deaths. While it's probably the most difficult, it's not the only crisis we face in our lives. I am currently praying for several dear friends walking through a wide variety of "the shadow of death," whether it's the death of a family member, the death of a job, the death of a dream….
As I was reading my email the other day, I spotted a headline that caught my heart – Five Steps to Peace in a Really Bad Situation. Of course, I had to read it. It was GOOD. It wasn't anything new, necessarily. In fact, it was along the lines of things I've written about before, such as The Sandwich Generation Issues of Knowing and Trusting the Will of God Even With a 5th Metatarsal Fracture or 1 Thessalonians 5:18 To Encourage The Sandwich Generation.
I've learned, though, that even though you know something, it still helps to hear it again from another perspective. I was really blessed by this devotional and I think you will be as well. Particularly if you are going through or about to go through the death of a beloved parent or other relative.
Dr. Dean, who wrote this devotional, is, among other things, a pastor, a professor, and a counselor. And from the sounds of it, he is also right there in the trenches with us, caring for elderly parents. He wrote:
"How do you get peace in a really bad situation? You may be in the fight of your life financially and about to lose your home. It may be that you've been diagnosed with lung cancer as my father-in-law was last week. It may be that your marriage is falling apart. You fill in the blank. We're either headed into a crisis, in the midst of one, or coming out of one. Now coming out of one is great. We can see what God was up to in part and we get a measure of peace from that. But how can we get peace if we're headed into or in the midst of a crisis? God tells us how to do just that in Phil. 4:4-9. "
Rejoice in the Lord always ; again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.
Philippians 4: 4-9
This devotional and the Bible passage seemed especially appropriate this weekend as we remember all our fallen heroes in uniform. My dad and several uncles served during World War II, friends and relatives in my peer group served when I was younger, and currently I am blessed with a few special young men in my family who are actively serving and protecting us and I am so blessed by them and proud of each one of them, as I know each of you are by those special people in your family and friends.
I want to say a STRONG THANK YOU to each one, past, present, and future, as tears roll down my cheeks. You are a blessing to our country and our family! And I also want to say THANK YOU to each person who has sacrificed a beloved one to help protect our country and ourselves.
I pray for each of them, each of you in the Sandwich Generation and the Baby Boomers Generation, and each of my family, friends, and myself, that we may be blessed on this Memorial Day weekend. And for any going through trials and loss, I pray that this devotional, and God's precious words will comfort us all.
P.S. On this Memorial Day, if you'd like more devotions and words of encouragement, you might enjoy Miracles and Moments of Grace: Inspiring Stories from Military Chaplains, No Atheists in Foxholes, and Daily Guideposts: Daily Inspiration for Our Men and Women in Uniform 🙂