Originally posted 1-10-2017
My mom lives with frontal lobe dementia disorder. Sometimes I wonder what she thinks about her days. They are pretty much the same for her. She stays in bed for longer periods of time now even into the afternoon. When I turn her over to get her up she always begins to count the blades on the fan with awe. She counts a lot. What’s that about? It’s always a little different when I seek to interact with her. Perhaps I shouldn’t call it interacting but more like entering her lack of reality. God, how can I better love my mom?
Yesterday was no exception. It was an odd day for her because she was up and busy. What I mean by that is she was wandering around opening cupboards. She said she was looking for something but didn’t know what because she didn’t find it. It sometimes takes me a while to decipher what she is saying. I watched her reach into the silverware drawer and pull out a spoon. Then she walked to the back door with it and then she took it and handed it to my dad. While he was still looking at the spoon, she came back into the kitchen and picked up a bowl of cashews. She took the cashews to him. He said, “These are nuts, I don’t need a spoon”. I wanted him to just say thank you. She was doing her best to give him something to eat.
After a while she settled down at the kitchen table with a can of Dr. Pepper. There was a paper towel on the table with which she was playing. When I came into the kitchen she shoved it over to me and said, “Here read this. You’re not going to believe it”. I picked it up and flipped it over a couple of times and assured her that she was right I didn’t believe it. She shook her head in a knowing fashion as if we shared some secret. This was hard for me. There are things that happen which cause me to cry and this was one of them. God, how can I better love my mom?
Her life is an existence every day. She exists because God wants her to continue to live and breathe right now. Some people might think there’s a lesson to be learned by me but really my mom’s life is not about me but about God. We are all here for Him. So a better question is, “What can I learn about God as I love and care for my mom?” This incident with the paper towel brought to mind my forgiveness. You see when Satan accuses me, I hand him the blank paper towel and say read this! Jesus has taken all my sins and there is nothing there. There is nothing to read! There is nothing to bring about accusation. That too brings tears to my eyes, tears of gratitude for a Savior who completely and utterly forgives me.
“In him (Jesus) we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses according to the riches of his grace,” Ephesians 1:7
You see I love my mom better when I understand my God and His love for me. I want to see Him on this road. I want to reflect Him. I want to honor Him as I seek to honor my mom. That’s what I want to learn in all of this.
So the next time you feel accused, pick up a paper towel and read it. Then thank God that it says nothing because Jesus has washed you clean.