Monday, July 27, 2009

Finding the Christ in Hidden Places

I ministered the funeral of D. last week, a 94 year old woman. When I first met D. she was at home, but over time she was forced to reside in a nursing home. Most of D.'s family had died, but she was not alone. Her best friend (who also had died several years ago) had a son (J.) who took it upon himself to care for her. J. is single, but, when not at work, he diligently cared for D., even as as her health failed, and he was with her when she died. This is one of those small stories about little people which most often goes untold, but which teaches us so much about true faithfulness, loyalty and the essence of discipleship.

When I complimented J. about his care giving he pushed back and told me that he had done nothing extraordinary; he felt like D. was a second mother. I accepted his response and I noted that his naivete was honest but misguided. In my experience his years of sacrifice for someone not of his own are rare indeed. I also decided that my cynicism is also misguided, and that there may be this kind of care giving occurring all around me. I hope this is true.