On the alert- a carer’s relationship with their phone!

Always there.

When we have a loved one who is vulnerable or unwell, the sound of your phone becomes crucial. Whatever you are doing, your phone is always nearby, and you are on edge listening for it to ring. Whether it is a child struggling at school, a loved one in a care home, or a relative in hospital, your phone is that conduit of the latest information, and as such becomes central in your life.

When the phone goes off, my first instinct was to worry, what has happened, what can be done, what decision needs to be made. It is like the rest of the world is on hold in that moment, as you digest this latest twist in their care, and what it might mean. Time slows down, and is almost still.

I love when the person on the other end of the phone understands that, and starts their sentence ‘ now I don’t want you to worry, but………’ It just seemed so humane, and gives you time to adjust to what was coming next.

For my late husband, phonecalls could sometimes mean he had a seizure, an infection, or in some instances that he needed to go to hospital. Sometimes I needed to go straight away, morning, noon or night, and it became the norm for me to be ready to do so. It only had to happen now and again, for me to be on high alert every time I heard the sound of the phone, as I never knew what to expect.

I don’t know if my relationship with my phone will ever be normalised. I believe that Colin is now safe with Jesus, and so I am not going to get emergency calls about him in the middle of the night. However, when the phone goes……..

And so in every circumstance, I need to trust in God, and to seek to be calm. In psalm 28 verse 7 it says ” The Lord is my strength and my shield. I trust Him with all my heart.’ As we all learn to trust God more, may we panic less, even when the phone goes!

Gracious God, we thank You for all who care for others, and do so with love and grace. We thank you for people on phones, who quickly communicate vital information. Lord Jesus, You encircle us with Your love, You communicate your care for all who are struggling. May we learn to hear the phone ring without being fearful or catastrophising. May Your holy spirit guide us, and bring healing, and peace. Amen

Peace beyond understanding.

Deep rest.

There are so many sad and disturbing things going on in the world just now, it can be hard to be still. There is too much to make our minds race, and to disturb our equilibrium. The number of people unwell, especially ill with covid 19 at home and in hospital is difficult to comprehend, and the consequent human misery and loss that is resulting for so many families.

In the midst of all this, it is hard to know how best to pray, I pray for the virus not to spread more, and for healing of those who are sick. But I also want to pray for peace for those who are critically ill.

I am so fortunate, as I am relatively healthy, but in times when I have been unwell, I can remember my body feeling so busy fighting infection, that my mind felt very far from reality, as if everything in the world was so far away, I was actually very peaceful. Ironically it felt like quite a safe place to be, where nothing bothers you, because you are not really thinking. You can hear people and respond in your soul, but not necessarily physically.

I was watching a you tube clip of Joni Eareckson Tada the other day, a woman who recently had covid 19. It is quite a challenging, direct and emotional video, so watch it only if you feel able – a summary is below- https://youtu.be/squAX6lV2Aw        

Joni is quadriplegic, so when she got her diagnosis of covid 19, she thought she would die. She was in hospital, fighting to breathe, when she felt a deep trust in Jesus, and an odd calmness- she knew that whether she lived or died, she was with God, that she was resting in the shadow of the Almighty. And she was at peace. She wants everyone to share this peace of Christ, which is why she shares her experience.

People have different experiences and spiritual understandings, but that resting in the Almighty, that deep peace and trust is surely something that we want people to have. So they are not worried or anxious or fearful, but rather completely at rest.

In Philippians chapter 4, Paul encourages the Christians in Philippi to trust God, to present their requests to Him, and then he says:

‘ and the peace of God, which passes all human understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.’ Verse 7

When I feel worried or uncertain, I know I can trust Jesus, and He often shares that sense of peace with me. To be honest, there are still times when I still struggle or am restless. But God wants to bless us with His peace, and that is the gift He longs to share.

May we pray: Lord Jesus Christ, our hearts break over the number of people unwell and dying because of covid 19. We give thanks for all the paramedics and medical staff working with patients, especially in ICU wards, for their medical care and kindness to their patients and their families. Please bless them all, and especially those that are critically ill. May your holy spirit bring to them, that deep peace that passes all understanding, and may they know that whatever happens, that they can find safety in your loving hands, Amen.