Deb Molder is one of the leaders in C&YA and the Administrative Assistant to our staff at Midtown Baptist Temple. She also teaches the Emotions Study, dedicated to helping young women learn a lifestyle of temperance and dependence on God. Deb is famous at MBT for “keeping everything together” as she is such a crucial part of the day-to-day activities in our church. Over the last few years Deb’s mother has struggled with Alzheimer's. For someone who is gifted at organization, leadership and administration, this trial has challenged Deb’s faith in new ways. The following is a reflection on what this time has been like for her and how it has impacted her relationship with God.
My Saturdays these days are painted with Mom and Alzheimer's... We begin with a five minute trip to Aldi's, where I'm asked no less than 10 times "where are we going" and then told "this is too far!"
Finally we arrive, and Mom is SOOO proud to be helping me as she pushes the cart.. At the checkout she becomes agitated that we can't just leave with the groceries??? Her frustrations begin to increase and now she just wants to go "HOME" to her "Mom and Dad". As she begins to reflect and embrace her younger years, she becomes worried about her babies, "Debbie and Jackie". Where are they?? Who's taking care of them??
I try to explain I'm her daughter Debbie, but there's only objections to that thought, which she thinks is absolutely absurd! Finally we get in the car, play some Christmas music and begin singing together!! She's able to calm down. We arrive back at her home...groceries get put up...and she whispers, "I'm so glad you're here.. Thank you for coming...you're my favorite person". We go out to pick up something for lunch, we go for a walk, then drive around the lake to see the ducks and end with pulling out some lawn chairs to sit in the yard as we listen to 50's music. and sometimes we dance! Jitterbug and the Twist are her favorites. Also throughout the afternoon are occasional outbursts of her frustrations and confusion, that I quickly try to divert with a new activity or food.
And once in a great while, there are those really special moments where I see a glimpse of the mom I once knew! Praise The Lord! Yes, she's still in there.
Mom's Alzheimer's has been one of my greatest trials. Watching her slowly lose her memories has been heartbreaking. There were many Saturdays (years ago) that I cried all the way home, begging the Lord to heal her. Yet, even tho her mind slowly got worse and I lost "my mom", there have been so many things the Lord has taught me and keeps reminding me of throughout this season of life. Such as:
God's still on the throne.
God has purpose through this trial..
All things work together for good to those that love God..
I must walk by faith and not sight...
God's grace is sufficient..
The Lord is coming back!!!!
Now believe me, I've not always been able to focus and hold onto those truths, but have learned that when I do, there is peace.
My mom accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as her Savior In her late 50's, praise God! She's on her way to Glory!!! She's had a great life, and I can't let these last few years of it erase all the wonderful and cherished memories I have of her.
Another amazing thing, this illness has brought my brother Jack, back into our family! He was lost to meth thirty years ago. Now he's accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as his Savior too! He's her primary care giver, and it was all his idea! He's stepped up to the plate like never before and I'm so proud of him. We are closer today than ever before. I know too that my mom would have willingly sacrificed herself to get my brother back!
So I keep wondering, is all this an answer to her prayers?
So I keep wondering, is all this an answer to her prayers? Guess i won't know all God is answering and doing until the Judgement Seat, but there have been so many confirmations of His hand through this ordeal.
In closing I just want to mention a few verses that I have learned to cleave to every Saturday:
2Cor 4:14 Knowing that he which raised up the Lord Jesus shall raise up us also by Jesus, and shall present us with you. 15 For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God. 16 For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. 17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; 18 While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.
2Cor 9: 8 And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work:
When I turned to The Lord Jesus Christ 34 years ago, no one in my family knew Him. Today, I know that my mom, dad, brothers, sister and some cousins have all accepted Jesus and we'll be spending eternity together. Praise The Lord. However, in looking back I see that God often used the heartbreaking things of this life to help them see and turn to the grace of God and accept The Lord Jesus Christ, King of Kings and Lord of Lord. And so I've learned to be very thankful for the hard sometimes ugly things of this life...
However, in looking back I see that God often used the heartbreaking things of this life to help them see and turn to the grace of God....
And, if you ever think of us on Saturdays, please pray. Pray for God's grace and hand on our short time together.
Thank you and God Bless.