How does if affect you when the people you care for value you?
a. It makes it much easier to pay the price b. It's nice, but not necessary for me c. I can't give care long-term without being valued d. I feel under-valued and I've become cynical e. My reward is in the giving, not being valued. f. Other: _________________
How does it affect your caregiving when you value the people for whom you care? a. It changes my whole motivational impulse b. I can tolerate a lot more c. It's hard to do in all cases d. It's something I need to remember all the time e. Other: ________________
Every parent or nursery worker has faced the struggle of trying to calm a cranky child. "When your Heavenly Father finds you in a cranky, frustrated or overwhelmed mood, are you ready for His comforting embrace? Do you allow His love to melt away the tension, the disappointments and the anger? OR are you like the strong-willed child , lashing out against His gentle touch or withdrawing for a long, lonely sulk? From "Compassion Fatigue"
It's easy to lose Perspective during our time of motherhood. We can use the metaphor of the Ferris Wheel that allows us to get a great view. We can look beyond the moment or the day or season to see the bigger picture of our life. The Bigger picture helps us realign ourselves with what is true - we are in the foreground where we live but God is in the background surrounding us and giving perspective to our NOW.
We all have days when anger and frustration have threatened to overwhelm us. In the midst of those moments we need to realize that there is no other area in our life in which the ramifications of our choices are so far reaching and the potential for regret is so great.
While Motherhood is a privilege that offers great joys and great challenges, we need to be clear that it is only one part of a whole life to be lived for God's kingdom purposes. Many who have not kept their mothering in perspective with the greater call of God on their life find themselves feeling useless after their children leave the nest. We can also be overcommitted during this time of Motherhood and find ourselves losing perspective.
We can become fearful of the conflicts with the other things we care about and the realities of daily life. During such times all we can do is carry it all into God's presence over and over again, asking "What will it require of me to nurture the emotional, physical and spiritual well-being of my children and myself?" We need to trust Him as we come to realize He cares equally about me and my children; He alone can give us perspective. Psalms 32: "I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you."
"What Christ cares about is our hearts, our complete love and devotion. And He will create crises in our lives to show us what it is that holds us." - Shelia Walsh
"There is no life without pain. No treasure without the hunt . . . Getting things easily will never make us into the women God is calling us to be."
Jesus, in his commands to love, makes some of the most direct statements about our responsibility to give care and compassion to those around us. However, he lightens this heavy responsibility by telling us that his burden (to love) is not too heavy for us to bear.
Read Matthew 11:28-30 28"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."
The sense of responsibility in caring for others and the anxiety that goes with it, feels like a huge burden that only you must carry. The quest is: How does Jesus lighten that load?
The 23rd Psalm tells us that our Great Shepherd longs to lead us beside "still waters" and to "restore" our souls.
Restore - to bring back to a former or normal condition by repairing, rebuilding, altering, etc. To bring back health and strength.
What woman doesn't need her soul restored? And her perspective restored? The Hebrew scholars translate this word "restore" to mean the rekindling of an exhausted spirit.
Compassion Fatigue Symptoms:
1. Lake of Appreciation - Lack of reward or a sense that our efforts have been futile. 2. Loss of Ideals - In our youth we are idealistic. Having and raising children and getting older we can lose our ideals and therefore, our perspective 3. Getting hurt - When you/we get hurt or wounded by those we are caring for we often pull back emotionally (this can be a husband, children, friends, other family, or church members) 4. Over Availability - When we set no boundaries to protect ourselves we can eventually face the danger of feeling trapped in our serving or just burn out. 5. Lack of Success - Unable to fulfill all the tasks on our plate or feel inadequate to the tasks we have with our children (special needs with our children or the competitiveness we feel with other mothers and their children.) 6. Self-Neglect - We can become so anxious and captivated with our task of caring for children, family, friends, etc. we forget how very important it is to care for ourselves.
What does it mean to you that God sees and values the work you do?
Read Psalm 51:12 12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. Psalms 77:20 You led your people like a flock by the hand of Moses and Aaron. Isaiah 40:11 He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young.
Isaiah 49:10 I will turn all my mountains into roads, and my highways will be raised up.
Throughout time, God's people have found their "still waters", peace and perspective thru these verses:
Abraham - Genesis 19:27 Early the next morning Abraham got up and returned to the place where he had stood before the LORD.
David - Psalm 32: 7 You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance. Selah
Psalm 119:114 You are my refuge and my shield; I have put my hope in your word.
Daniel - 6:10 Now when Daniel learned that the decree had been published, he went home to his upstairs room where the windows opened toward Jerusalem. Three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to his God, just as he had done before.
Mary - Luke 10:39-42 She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet listening to what he said. 40But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, "Lord, don't you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!" 41"Martha, Martha," the Lord answered, "you are worried and upset about many things, 42but only one thing is needed.[a] Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her."
Every month our MOPS mentor Paula VanDerlyn works hard to prepare a bible study based on the MOPS theme for the steering committee. We start our planning meetings with this study to focus us on what is really important..
Please share what you think about this discussion. We want to hear your thoughts!!!
"Even tho my children are all grow, my care giving job is not over. I live with in Somers with my present husband, Jim, his daughter and her 3 year old son and my 85 year old mother. We share 5 adult children ranging in age from 27 tho 42 and have 10 grandchildren ranging in age 4 months thru 11 years old.
In my role as Mentor for MOPS God has brought me to a place where He can use so much of my life experience. I've always worked with women and children in many capacities. I was a Jr. High Youth Leader, Sunday School teacher and women's Bible study leader. In addition to all these teaching experiences God has faithfully seen me thru many losses - including the loss of my 3 year old son Jonathan to cancer.
I had placed my faith and trust in Jesus Christ at the age of 18 after being raised as a Jehovah's Witness. I've come to understand the Lorship of Jeus in my live, having experienced His faithfulness, strength and presence thruough all these years of raising my family and sustaining difficult losses.
I feel strongly about helping young mothers find God's reality and purpose for their lives because I know personally how He has both changed and sustained me in so many meaningful ways.