Saturday, July 17, 2010

Honesty? The best policy?

Yes. It is. But there are consequences when you decide to be honest. Sometimes what you say hurts someone. Or they figure out the real you and they no longer like you. Honesty is painful, but sometimes it's the only way to get help and get beyond living a double life.

Chronic illness does things to a person, whether they are the one who is sick or the whether they are the caregiver. It changes us. It's painful, terrible, good, bad, difficult, trying, beneficial, harmful and frightening. It brings hope, fear, worry, joy, loss, sadness and peace.

We can learn so much from illness, and at the same time, we can be robbed of so much. We can grow during these times, but we can also loose so much. Things change in chronic illness and most of us don't like change. Oh, fun changes we like...things like vacations, new restaurants, etc. But most big changes in our lives, we fight against. Especially the bad changes, the terrible things, the hard stuff.

I've been doing some fighting. I've been holding on to things..... and finding them changing on me has done a number on me. I don't like for my nice life to change into a hard life. I don't like the things the illness has done to me and to my husband. And, while I'm fighting, I'm realizing that fighting changes nothing, except maybe makes me a harder person to be around.

I'm trying to let go of some things, but sometimes it's hard to know what to hang on to, what to fight for and what needs to be approached with an open hand. Open to let the change happen and learning to live the new life, the new things.

Love is always worth fighting for, but sometimes love changes. And, that's one I'm having a difficult time with.

This past week, hubby and I sat down with a Pastor who has been such a blessing to our family. I was open, I was honest. Something I said hurt my husband. And, I'm not exactly sure of what the Pastor now thinks of me. I'm sure he still loves me. He's a gracious and kind man. But the main thing is this: I was honest. And, because of that honesty, some things have been talked about in our home.

The only advice our Pastor could give either of us, my hubby and I is this: pray. We both have one specific prayer to pray. We are each asking our Father in heaven for a specific thing. I will share mine.

I am praying for the Lord to give me a supernatural ability, a grace, to accept this life and deal with the difficulties I face each and every day. It sounds simple, and while I have prayed this many times since we began this journey, I am now focusing my heart and attention on this. I NEED supernatural ability because I cannot do this another day in my own strength. Ten years in and I have lost my ability. My strength has failed. Sure, I've known that as Christians we are never to do anything in our own strength and all this time, I've felt as if I was using the strength of the Lord to get through the days. And, now as the strength is beginning to fail me, perhaps I'm seeing that I've been living in my own strength.

I am begging my Jesus to do this work in me. Will you agree with me in prayer that He will give me supernatural ability and grace? I want to walk to the end of my time here in the valley, with the Lord's hand upon me, giving me His strength.


WhiteStone said...

I need this prayer myself in regards to the increasing needs of an elderly family member. I understand clearly the issue of my own sinful heart. And I do struggle so hard with it and with my resultant attitude and behavior. Oh, how we must rely on God working in us.
God bless you and your hubby as you walk in prayer.

YankeesFan said...

I also understand the need for this specific prayer.

I also understand the feeling that maybe you have been relying on your own strength. But could it be that you have been relying on the strength of the Lord and only recently you have faltered and are relying on your own strength, which is why you now feel the loss of your strength? I ask because this very issue has been on my mind the past several weeks in regard to my own circumstances.

Paula said...

Whitestone, I will be praying for you as you meet the needs of your loved one.

Thank you so much YankeesFan. Perhaps that is the case for me too. At least this has opened the door for more communication. As long as it is possible, communication is so very important. And, seeing once again my need for Jesus is never a bad thing....

Living on Less Money said...

I can very much relate to what you are saying. I, too, need His grace more and more... especially not to fear in those very dark moments when it seems that all may be lost. I oftentimes think about a talk I heard from Elisabeth Elliot on Psalms 16:5... Lord, you have assigned me my portion. She shared that each moment of our day is specifically portioned from the Lord to conform us into the image of Christ. Romans 8:28,29. My husband and I also listened to a DVD recently where two people were being counseling where the woman was very ill and the man was struggling with the changes. God was working in both. In the caregiver it seemed that He was learning lessons of servitude while the one with the illness was learning patience. I'm not sure what the Lord is doing in you.. but this I am confident.. He is working.