Sunday, April 13, 2008

Meeting The Needs of Those Who Are in Need

I have learned many lessons during this season of my life. One of the greatest is how to minister to others who are in need. There have been dozens of people who have shown me how to serve when you are not sure what the needs are.
As I walk through this valley I am unable to realize some of my family's basic physical needs. We have had many continue to bring us meals. A huge blessing when food is the last thing on my mind and yet the children still need to eat. We have had our lawns mowed, flowers planted, fences fixed, and even a dog buried. Most of the normal, every day chores are mentally, physically, and emotionally challenging. I usually get one good chore out of the way each day. That's it! And, then I collapse utterly exhausted.
In this grief, which I am finding out takes quite a toll on you physically, I am really unable to see what needs to be done. Our old chore charts will no longer work. Everything in our lives has changed including what duties we all must take on. New chore assignments will eventually make it back into our lives but for now we are dependant on others to help us in these areas.
The most important lesson I have learned through this is to just do it. If you see a need or know that there is no way this need is being met in another way then just do it. Don't ask if they would like it done...just do it. From personal experience, I really had not noticed that the lawn needed help until someone brought it to my attention. My grief and the grieving that my children are experiencing is taking up the majority of my brain power.
I would not have thought that driving to the foothills to visit Social Security would be that overwhelming but my friend knew it would and just told me that she was taking me. No "would you like to have someone join you?". The daily meals that we were receiving at the beginning of all this have dwindled but there are still friends and neighbors who every-once-in-a-while just bring over a hot meal or gift cards to a local restaurant. A dear friend is sending over her house cleaner...what a gift! When my friend was here from Atlanta she surprised me with a clean house and clean sheets on my bed. And, she even organized the kids to pick the rest of the oranges on our tree (something Eric did with the kids every year that will now have to be added to the very long list of new chores for us to take on).
I am not naive. I know that this new life is going to take some time getting used to. Even creating a new chart is going to be a big challenge. Step by step we will get there....there is no hurry. But, for now, we are extremely grateful for all the helping hands and can't wait till we get the chance to reciprocate.


godlover said...

How quickly we forget about the "meaningless" chores when broken hearts prevail. You are to be lauded for allowing your friends to do things for you. So often we just try to stay "strong" and do it all ourselves when there are people around us just itching to get in and do something for us. You are very considerate to let others minister to you and your family. Don't worry about the small things. They will eventually get done. Just concentrate on getting through the grief. I continue to life you up in prayer.

Calaveras County CA

Anonymous said...

I wish I was near enough to be able to help your family ... in reading your post I was thinking about this verse:

Exodus 17:12
But Moses’ hands became heavy; so they took a stone and put it under him, and he sat on it. And Aaron and Hur supported his hands, one on one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun.

May the Lord continue to guide you, lead you, uphold you, comfort you and bless you!
Tucson, Az

The Herd said...

Wow to that scripture...that's what I will pray for you too...that you would feel God's uplifting and support. I know we are not to live off feelings, but I do want you to feel God's presence through this valley for sure.
I have a dear friend that went through this grief about 1 1/2 years ago...don't forget to chat with those who can understand to know that your feelings are very normal and to find out what they did and found helpful. Sometime, it helps to share these burdens so you don't feel that you are going insane(it probably feels that way thought)...but the Lord has not left you or your family...He's walking beside you.
Praying for you in Texas,

thetysonfamily said...

Thank you for posting this, Heather. I really needed to hear these things, both to accept what people offer to me (when I had a miscarriage I tried to refuse help, but I really needed it) and to know I just need to DO what I see needs to be done for my friends in need without asking if they would like me to (of course I say no myself when asked that question!). Your blog was always such a help to me in raising my children, and even now in your grief, you are helping me to grow. I wish I could come help you now, too. I continue to pray for you and your family. (I'm linked to you through Kristin Lodi.)

Lindsay Tyson
La Luz, New Mexico

Quinne said...

Hi Heather :) Thank you for the timely reminder to do what needs to be done when we see a need! You are a blessing. Love and prayers from NC, Q

felmleyfam said...

just hearing the music on your site is so encouraging. even though you are weak and weary yet inwardly the Lord is renewing you, quieting you, comforting you, and there in your grief and sorrow. we continue to pray for you. praise God that you get one thing accomplished in the day...but really SO much more as you minister to your children, train them, love them, nuture them, grieve amongst them, hug them, kiss them, pray for them.... you get so much more done each day. and it is hard because the dishes can't wait forever. in this time we are praying for you all.

Missy said...

That's a good lessson Heather. Don't ask....just do it. Thanks for that reminder.

Christy said...

I am thankful the Lord led me to your blog. I read it every chance I get, listen to the music often, pray, and learn. Thank you so much.

felmleyfam said...

even after commenting yesterday and praying for you (and being a mom myself) i want to tell you again that YOU ARE DOING SO MUCH for your children in your: hugs, smiles, tears, embraces, tucking them in, helping go potty, reading their writings, encouraging them to write, helping goose with future plans, letting your children continue to look to the future, BEING WITH THEM. You are an excellent mother.
1I love the LORD, because he hath heard my voice and my supplications.

2Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I call
upon him as long as I live.

3The sorrows of death compassed me, and the pains of hell gat hold
upon me: I found trouble and sorrow.

4Then called I upon the name of the LORD; O LORD, I beseech thee,
deliver my soul.

5Gracious is the LORD, and righteous; yea, our God is merciful.

6The LORD preserveth the simple: I was brought low, and he helped me.

7Return unto thy rest, O my soul; for the LORD hath dealt
bountifully with thee.

8For thou hast delivered my soul from death, mine eyes from tears,
and my feet from falling.

9I will walk before the LORD in the land of the living.

10I believed, therefore have I spoken: I was greatly afflicted:

11I said in my haste, All men are liars.

12What shall I render unto the LORD for all his benefits toward me?

13I will take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the

14I will pay my vows unto the LORD now in the presence of all his

15Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints.

16O LORD, truly I am thy servant; I am thy servant, and the son of
thine handmaid: thou hast loosed my bonds.

17I will offer to thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call
upon the name of the LORD.

18I will pay my vows unto the LORD now in the presence of all his

19In the courts of the LORD's house, in the midst of thee, O
Jerusalem. Praise ye the LORD.

thank you for sharing.