Featured Posts
Recent Posts

When There is No Peace

Updated: Mar 28


When I recently considered writing a blog post about what to do when there is no peace during a difficult time of caregiving (and life in general during and after a pandemic), I wanted an expert to weigh in and give insight. We talk often about committing to self-care, joining a supportive community, and building a medical home to provide the support you need on this journey. However, it is not always appropriate to just give you bullet points to follow during the most difficult journey you may face. I sense your pain and can hopefully share some godly wisdom with you that I have gained through life experiences, but often our journeys are so diverse that a professional voice is greatly appreciated.

So, I contacted my very smart and capable sister-in-law, Linda A. Gaskill, M.Ed., (school psychologist in Maryland’s Prince George’s County Public Schools) and asked her to please offer advice to our families on how to cope and get through some of the struggles they face. Linda did not disappoint. She touched on several of the conversations that we have had with families during life unexpected. I share a portion of her seasoned insight and tender heart with you here today.

One of the things that I have discovered during the Covid-19 pandemic is the importance of developing social and emotional competencies. I am working with a colleague to promote Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) district-wide, as we have found that school districts across the country that had SEL programs in place before the pandemic were able to rebound, regroup, and reset, while others struggled to regain their footing. Through the establishment of community, they were able to assist one another and foster resilience during this unprecedented period in our nation’s history.

One of the SEL lessons we have tried to pass on to teachers, staff, and parents alike is that of self-care. So often caregivers fail to allow themselves the "luxury" of taking a minute to breathe. While it may seem selfish at first, taking this time can be just what we need to be the best version of ourselves for those we love and care for. As is so often said, “You can’t pour from an empty cup.” As a believer, self-care for me includes spending time alone with the Lord. In His presence, I am refreshed and strengthened. I can be honest with Him and share my frustrations, my doubts, my fears, and my limitations. He wants us to lean on Him. His Word washes over us and we begin to see things from His vantage point, from an eternal rather than a temporal perspective.

And then there is community ... people who have had similar struggles, people who understand that peace can often be hard to find. The Bible tells us in 2 Corinthians 1:4 that He (God) comforts us in all our troubles so we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. It is important to know that we are not alone in our struggles, and to have a safe space to share our moments of weakness or anger without the fear of judgment.

Linda went on to share with me that in her own recent personal loses…

… I learned that the Lord wanted me to just be authentically me …. I let down my guard, and, as painful as it was, I decided that I just couldn't be what others expected me to be, or thought I should be, or even what I thought I should be during that time. I was finally tired of trying to be what everyone else needed. I needed the Lord's grace to guide me and His strength to carry me, without caring about what it might look like to others. I decided to just be who I am, flaws and all.

While brokenness is humbling and sometimes painful, it is also freeing. It was only then that I realized that God couldn't fix what I wouldn't admit to being. He requires truth in the inward parts, and sometimes that truth is ugly or shameful; but ... In my weakness, He was strong on my behalf, and He did in and through me what I could not do in my own strength.

Those who may be looking for permission or guidance to reach out to a therapist or clergy or to someone not closely connected with their day-to-day struggles and can provide a fresh perspective should be encouraged to do so.

Lastly, the link here includes 36 self-care ideas under 10 minutes. I hope you find them helpful.

I am so grateful for these words from Linda and her heart for those of us at InOurArms. She always goes above and beyond to provide real solutions.

Thank you, Linda, for your expertise. Thank you, blog community, for caring for yourselves and your loved ones enough to engage with us here.

Listening Library: Together (For King & Country, feat. Kirk Franklin and Tori Kelly)

https://youtu.be/lR1Hk0FVi_k


And we urge you, brothers and sisters, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone.(1 Thessalonians 5:14 NIV)



Together


This is for the busted heart This is for the question marks This is for the outcast soul Lost control, no one knows

Sing it for the can't-go-back Sing it for the broken past Sing it for the just found out Life is now upside down

If you're lookin' for hope tonight, raise your hand If you feelin' alone and don't understand If you're fightin' in the fight of your life, then stand We're gonna make it through this hand-in-hand

And if we fall, we will fall together Together

This is for the second chance This is for the new romance Sing it for the loved in vain Overcame, it's not too late

If you're lookin' for hope tonight, raise your hand If you feelin' alone and don't understand If you're fightin' in the fight of your life, then stand We're gonna make it through this hand-in-hand

And if we fall, we will fall together Together (together, together) Oh, and when we rise, we will rise together Together, ooh

We will rise together, ooh Listen

If you're lookin' for hope tonight (and you're all alone) If you're feelin' alone tonight (can you feel?) If you're in the fight of your life (I can promise) We're gonna make it happen, yeah

I will be by your side (by your side) 'Cause love is in the air tonight (can you feel it?) All up and see the light (come on!) Whenever, ever, ever Just as long as we're together, say

If we fall (fall), we will fall together Ha ha, I got you, my brother Together (together) I see you my sister

And when we rise, we will rise together Together (oh)

If we fall (if we fall), we will fall together Take my hand (together) Come and stand

When we rise (when we rise) We will rise together (we will rise together) Together (that's right!)

Together we are dangerous Together with our differences Together we are bolder, braver, stronger

Songwriters: Kirk Franklin / Joel David Smallbone / Ricky Jackson / Ran Jackson / Joshua Peter Kerr / Luke James Smallbone

TOGETHER lyrics © Shankel Songs, Method To The Madness, Kilns Music, Tunes Of Black River, Church Boy Llc, Curb Dayspring Music, Bna Bangers, Curb Word Music


87 views0 comments

In Our Arms

LIFE UNEXPECTED