Part 9: Song Enough
Take a look outside your window. Listen to the bird as it sings to heaven with its own God-crafted voice. See it fly just as God made it to do. Delight yourself in its colorful plumage, made by God for His pleasure and yours.
As a caregiver, I sometimes feel as if I'm wasting my God-given gifts. There is much I want to do for God's kingdom. I can go back to work at another non-profit organization. I can write another book, but with strong Christian characters. I can contribute in my church's volunteer efforts. I should be out in the world, "singing" in the way God created me to do. What am I doing ensnarled in the mundane minutiae of caring for an old person? What kind of song is it to wash soiled bedclothes?
Sometimes, I feel as if my song has been muted. Or silenced altogether.
But maybe there is a kind of song in the work of a caregiver. Maybe the notes, though not audible, are heard by our heavenly Father. Maybe the music of our self-sacrifice is pleasing to God. Maybe a silent song is song enough.
God calls on Christ-followers to help our fellow man, be they the homeless or the home-bound, the orphans or the old, the many or the one. Our service is measured not in the number of people we lift up, but in the extent to which we raise them from their distress. The good Samaritan from Jesus's parable went to great lengths to help the battered man he found on the road. He didn't just pick him up and dust him off. Jesus said the Samaritan interrupted the direction of his own life to help the man; got his hands soiled by bandaging the man's wounds; took the man to a place where he could nurse him; and paid someone to look after him so the man could regain his health.
And then Jesus taught us how to sing: "Go and do likewise."
"In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. The next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’
“Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?”
The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.”
Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.” (Luke 10:30-37)