LENTEN DEVOTION for Friday, March 2
     


CENTER

Steadfast God, grant me endurance, fidelity and patience this day.
   


CONSIDER   

 
They said of Isidore, the priest in Scetis, that if anyone had someone who was sick or weak or insolent and wanted to send them away, he would say, "Bring him to me." Then he would take him and cure him by his patience.

Paul said, "But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience." (Romans 8:25) 
  
   

 
REFLECT 

Suffering can bring out the worst in people. Sickness makes people irritable. Injury makes people brooding or sulky. Pain brings out anger.
The nurse gets accosted by the patient. The daughter is verbally abused by her aging parent. The spouse is yelled at by their partner with the flu. Those who suffer long sicknesses or pain sometimes take their frustrations out on the people who care for them most. It takes a very patient caregiver to not take misdirected anger personally.

Isidore the Priest was said to be so patient that he would take the insufferable suffering and heal them. He was able to bear with them, not take anything personally, ride with grace a roller coaster of emotions and navigate the darkest nights with the hurt and pained. His compassionate, steadfast presence was healing.

The apostle Paul calls us to hope for what is unseen and wait with patience. Paul is talking about perspective. In sickness, pain and grief, it is easy to lose perspective. It is easy to forget all the goodness, gifts, resources and hope that reside in a person. A patient caregiver maintains perspective and gently reminds those who suffer of the power within them and the hope before them. This has to be done with maximum sensitivity and care (it is often done without words), but it is crucial to help in the healing. A caring person walks with people when another step seems impossible.

Have you ever grown weary of caring for someone struggling? Have you ever gotten tired of someone who seems to always have a burden? Have you been tempted to pass off a sufferer or avoid them?

In many cases, what heals a person is another patient person willing to go the distance.
  
 
 
 

 
PRAY

God of steadfast love, you do not abandon us. Though we might rail against you, you remain firm. You are persistent and faithful. Ever here and there. Make us to be the same. Amen.   
 

 
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