I noticed that it has been almost a month since I last posted. I have been away in Arizona, USA visiting my son’s family for a month. We had a great time with his family, especially quality time with our grandchildren, who we missed greatly for two years. However, this joy was soured by a strange debilitating back pain that my wife suffered from. She is currently making a recovery from this after a few weeks in the hospital – glory to God and the prayers of church members and many pastor friends. God willing, I will write a blogpost about my vacation in Tucson, and about this medical emergency and God’s timely intervention. May his name be glorified always through our lives, both in joy or in suffering.
I have been in and out of hospital these several weeks, caring for my wife, as well as taking on the care of her older brother. It’s been tiring, challenging and frustrating at times but most times the grace and strength of God kept me going day by day. Sometimes anxious, sometimes full of faith, sometimes blur. The Bible readings during this period fell on Isaiah 40 to 55 and there were so many verses that spoke to my heart, encouraged me and my wife, and gave us faith and hope. The word of God feeds our soul with faith, hope and love. The rhema word helps me move from meditation into prayer seamlessly, and always lifts me up when I set my heart on his promises. The word is strengthening and in this trial I find myself on my knees with the open Bible and asking God to open my eyes and ears to his word.
I am learning how tough caregiving can be. I am now an admirer of all the church members who had to give care to their elderly or/and sickly parents, spouse or siblings. I salute them wholeheartedly with great respect. Now I experience for myself how much grace and strength and patience is needed to do this well. How we need to do it as though to the Lord himself. So much to learn. For one I have taken a day off ever so often to rest completely from caregiving and turn my attention to life-giving and life-lifting activities to attend to my needs. Can be as simple as cycling to Jurong Lake and having a picnic with myself. Take a walk at night with my camera and take pictures. Or having a leisurely breakfast at my favourite coffee and hawker fare. Or do chores and physical labour at home. Or idle and chill. Or learn to draw.
It is also a time I can focus on prayer and the word and some ideas for future books. I began to write out possible outlines for books on the subjects like: A to Z of Understanding Scripture; the A to Z of Communicating God’s Word, A to Z of God’s Promises. Good ideas but I will see how these ideas develop. In the meantime, I have yet to edit and refine my first draft of the first book: A to Z of Christ’s Finished Work. Hmmm….need to do all these on my knees. Really need to pray for God’s enabling help.
Right now my concern is with some commitments I have made to lead a retreat, and to preach in my home church and other churches. WhatsApp a prayer to God for me in my endeavours and in my continued learning to be a caregiver.