Matthew 25:36-40 (selected verses): “I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me . . . Then the righteous will answer him, “Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? . . . “Truly, I say to you, as you did it to the one of the least of these by brothers and sisters, you did it to me.”
I would like to introduce my home health care team. In the last they 5 days since I returned home from the hospital following back surgery they have been an awesome team and they deserve recognition.
First is John, by beloved husband. He has been amazing helping me get out of bed, up from the couch, and fixing for meals more than just macaroni and cheese, or peanut butter and pickle sandwiches. I couldn’t ask for a better person to be my Mobility and General Care Specialist.
Next up is Freddie, by sweet Zen natured Schipperke. His job is to sit and watch me constantly every day, every hour, every minute. To never leave my side, no matter where I am or what I am doing (get the picture). I must admit he seems to know when I am going to be in a lot of pain a beat before I do and he alerts John, the head of the team. He is a very special fellow with very special talent.
Suzie is my Pain Control Specialist. My l little blind Chihuahua is the best comforter when I am struck by a lot of pain. She snuggles up tighter and makes small sounds that fill me with calm. She may be small and she may be blind but she is the love of my life and companion that never wants to leave me. (Even visiting me in the hospital).
And then there are these two guys, George on the left is a Green Cheeked Amazon, and Cuddles (Aka Carlos the South American Terrorist) on the right is a Cherry Head Conure. They manage to keep me laughing by their silliness and funny calls. Without them our house would a lot quieter but a lot less fun.
Well there they are my Health Care Team. You might not want to hire them but to me they are priceless.
Mark 3:33-35 33And he replied, “Who are my mother and my brothers?” 34And looking at those who sat around him, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers! 35Whoever does the will of God is my brother and sister and mother.”
What makes a family? Is it the group you are born into or is it the people you gather around you?
I have often thought about the words of Jesus found in Mark about who he saw as family and I am coming to an understanding of what he meant. For me my family stopped being just the people I am related to by birth a very long time ago. I was never close with my sister, half-sisters, or half-brother and haven’t seen any of them in well over 30 years. Growing up I never really knew relatives of either my father or mother. So when my parents passed away it was the ending, so I thought, of family.
But over the years I discovered something amazing. Family is really more of what I make of it than what I am given. And, with that discovery I realized family means the people and companion animals who share in the life I live.
So some of my family are those who care about things that I care about such as justice, compassion, the environment, mercy, kindness and some are those who stick with me through good times and bad, no matter what. Some of the members of my family have feathers, and some have fur. Some of my family are newly found relatives of my birth family and some are the members of the family I married into. Some of my family are people I care so much about that it often hurts to be separated from them or to see them in pain. All of the them, from recently discovered cousins to members of my faith community, to the children of my husband and their children, and the dogs, birds and other creatures of God who have enriched my life, are my family. Every one of them have shared and are sharing in my life. Every one of those connecting lives is a sacred trust that God tells me to cherish, and nurture so that all live in abundant grace.
Who are your family members? What sacred connections do have and are creating? Offer a prayer for each and every one of them. Their love and friendship is what makes your life vibrant and purposeful. Give them in return your love and friendship.
Dear Holy Spirit, bless all creatures living and passed on that wing their ways across the sky, walk the good earth, and crawl along the path of life. Bless companion creatures that help, comfort and provide joy and company to those they live with. Bless those creatures that work alongside us in conflict and in peace, protect their brave souls and surround them with you love. Pray for those creatures that have been abused and neglected, help them to find loving forever homes, and bless those angelic souls that work tirelessly to help all creatures in need.
Oh, and Lord, as much as I am afraid of spiders I ask you to especially bless them, for they do the work you have set before them with great diligence. All I ask of you is to let those eight legged wonders know that if they stay hidden in my home, I will not harm them.
With gratitude for all your creation, this humblest of creatures thanks you for all of the dogs, cats, birds, cows, horses, chickens, turkeys, and duck that have blessed, and still bless my life. AMEN