Monday, December 10, 2012

Marriage Monday: Loving Your Husband with a Long-term Illness {Link up}


Marriage Mondays


Welcome back to Marriage Monday!  Two weeks ago, I directed your attention to a powerful post that I discovered which shared 30 Creative Ways to Show Love to our Husbands.  That post got me thinking about the topic of loving our husbands, which I plan to explore for the next few weeks.  Last week, I shared about Loving our Husbands When They are Sick.   I really appreciated several of you sharing specific ways that you and your spouse care for each other when illness strikes.

But, what about when that sickness is not just a stomach bug or a yearly bout with the flu, but a long-term, chronic illness??  How do you show love for your husband then??

While I cared for my husband after he broke his back in a bad wreck several years ago, that was only for a 12-week period.  I also helped care for his mother when she lived with us during her final years of life, but she remained able to do much of her own self-care during that time.  (I must say that I believe nothing shows love to your husband more than caring for his mother with as much tenderness as you would care for your own mother!!)  

That being said, I really don't have any personal experience with the day-in/day-out care of a spouse who is terminally ill or disabled and requires long-term physical care.   However, I know that some of you do, and I hope that you will help me out here by sharing what you've learned of that kind of agape love!
I have been blessed to observe this kind of love in action.  My grandmother (my Mom's mother) lovingly cared for her husband with MS for many years, even when he was bedridden and could not take care of any of his own needs.  She bathed him, fed him, cleaned up his messes, changed his catheter, and took care of his every need for many years until his death.  She also took care of his father until he died from cancer. She was a strong, hard-working, no-nonsense type of person, who just did what had to be done, whether she felt like it or not, out of a simple faith and sincere love for the Lord.

I've also witnessed the way my mother and father cared for my Dad's mother and father in their final years, and how my Dad now cares for my dear mother, who has MS like her father, as well as heart failure from a damaged aortic valve, which was caused by her reoccurring bouts with rheumatic fever as a girl. Can I say here that my Dad has never been a very compassionate person?? He has always been a "good" man -- hard-working, frugal, honest, moral -- even before he came to know the Lord.  But, he was never what I would call compassionate, tender, or "loving."  He was more of the "I told you once that I love you, and if that ever changes I'll let you know" variety!  ;) However, it is amazing to see what God has done in his heart and life! My Dad cares for my Mom with so much love and tenderness!  It really blesses me to see how God is enabling him to love and care for my Mom in a way that I never thought possible for him!

That also gives me hope that if I'm ever called to lay down my life for my husband by caring for all of his physical needs for an extended period of time that God would give me the grace to do so!  



My Mom and Dad, March 2012


I'm also deeply touched and inspired by Ian and Larissa's testimony! If you want to see agape love in action, watch Larissa!  She amazes me every time I watch this video!!








Your Turn to Share:

If you have a testimony of caring for your husband long term due to an accident or disability or terminal illness, I would love for you to share here!!!  I'm especially interested in hearing how God met you at your point of need, how He gave you unconditional love, how He provided compassion, tenderness, patience, joy, strength, how He took your weakness and replaced it with His strength.  Please share so that we might all be encouraged!!! 


If you were blessed or encouraged by this post, please consider sharing it with your friends on Facebook or other social media sites.  Thank you!



Link up:

I'd love to have you link up your blog to mine!  Please link up any past or present posts related to Christian marriage.  Don't forget to link back to my blog!  Thanks!



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