As a senior, I see so many that are hurting. Many that are left alone, with no family, kids that hate them for one reason or another, are filled with loneliness, and eventually depression. They have for the most part no one to talk to, except when they go outside, or to the grocery store or sit in a doctor’s office. They are in essence, waiting to die…for God if they have belief, to just take them home. They feel hopeless, unloved, and have nothing left, smiling through their tears.
Then on the other hand there may be young people of these seniors, that purposely shut the doors to their parents, living in a world of their own making. They too, may miss this parent, but, feel that too much is water is over the damn, else want to change this person in the elder years, and “make” them see how everything wrong in their life, is this parents fault. They too feel hopeless, cheated, and unloved, even though they may have children of their own, they always point the finger to this person who could never satisfy their needs or live up to their expectation. The walls are up on both sides. Stone by stone, over the years, this wall has been getting bigger and bigger. When either of them talk to each other, the “wall” stands as a stronghold in the middle and the past gets brought up in anger. When one brings up the same things over and over to the senior, it only makes that wall immovable and the hurts and pain pile up. For the young person,
it is unmet needs, for the senior it is a broken heart and events and past that they can’t change.
How to tear down the walls. Do you know that I looked up on line to a site called “Family Resources” http://www.familymanagement.com/aging//depression.html
There is actually such an illness as “Broken Heart Syndrome”. It does exist in seniors. Some common signs are :
*An “empty” feeling, ongoing sadness, and anxiety.
* Tiredness, lack of energy
*Loss of interest or pleasure in everyday activities.
*Sleep problems, including very early morning waking
*Problems with eating and weight (gain or loss)
*A lot of crying
*Aches and pains that just won’t go away (some actually legitimate)
*A hard time focusing, remembering, making decisions.
*Feeling that the future looks grim, feeling guilty, helpless or worthless.
*Thoughts of death of suicide, even if saved, wishing God take them home.
For these people who need family desperately, yet, have walls up preventing, “normal” relationships. Sometimes our family can be the blame for depression, and even physical ailments, as a “broken heart” syndrome can even cause genuine heart attacks. Sometimes the pain is so great between these family members, and there is so many misunderstandings and
“walls of false reasoning’s”, with the past always being brought up, year after year, that there doesn’t seem to be much point in continuing. For neither of these individuals can satisfy the other, and that wall gets higher and higher stronger and stronger, no matter which side tries, and it
only ends up in un fruitfulness.
So, before you end up with your doctor sending you to a psychiatrist, or worse, what does God say? We must ask ourselves, “Why has God allowed? What are God’s goals? I can refer to the Angel in Numbers 22:21-25. “And Balaam rose up in the morning, and saddled his ass, and went with the princes of Moab. And God’s angel was kindled because he went” (as it regards believers, even those of Balaam’s stripe, everything is a test. How will we act? How will we react? Even though Balaam had received permission from the Lord to go, the truth is he was going anyway, hence the anger of the Lord): “and the Angel of the Lord stood in the way for an adversary against him. Now he was riding upon his ass, and his two servants were with him.” (he was determined to curse the people of God, and for money; let it ever be said, God is ‘against’ all who follow such a course.) “And the ass saw the Angel of the Lord standing in the way, and his sword drawn in his hand; and the ass turned aside out of the way, and went into the field: and Balaam smote the ass, to turn her into the way.” (events are caused by the Lord, but far too often men fail to see that.) “But the Angel of the Lord stood in a path of the vineyards, a WALL being on this side and a WALL on that side. And when the ass saw the Angel of the Lord, she thrust herself unto the wall, and crushed Balaam’s foot against the wall: and he smote her again.” Finally the ass bowed down to the Angel in vs 27 and the Lord gave the as a voice, who said to Balaam, “What have I done unto you, that you have smitten me these 3 times?” (Self-will refused to be instructed by circumstances, but a will yielded to God is careful to observe them. Three times Balaam refused to learn from the animal on which he rode, and so blinded. If we deny, then we deny God himself and His word.) Remember, that God never puts up walls, only we do.
Proverbs 24:28-31 “Be not a witness against your neighbor without cause; and deceive not with your lips. ” (Extra care must be taken regarding ones ‘neighbor’ ‘family too’, for simply because you live side by side or as a part thereof, consequently, all must be done, even to the taking a loss and admitting when you are wrong, to remain on good terms.) “Say not, I will do so to him as he has done to me: I will render to the man according to his work”. (The Christian is to never to pay ‘kind’ for ‘kind’. Instead he is to bless those who curse him.” Matt 5:44 “And lo, it was all grown over (like our walls are left after a rival dies) with thorns, and nettles had covered the face thereof, and the stone wall thereof was broken down.” Remember, that when a family member that you have odds with, and built up a wall with, dies, your battle is ended, and there is nothing left but the briers and a broken wall forever. If you couldn’t change the past, when this person was alive? How will you feel when this person is dead. Then you can’t even hug them and say, ‘I’m sorry.”
The words we say affect the building of walls. Dear Lord, I’ve spoken so many words over the years, and reacted wrongly, and have repented over and over and over. Words stay. You may not mean those words, for we can’t help our tongue. We get hurt ,and we react out of emotion, past pain all compiled like a thunderous wave that comes over us, in defense. There have been so many many years of this back and forth, that it only takes one little thing, to set us off in defense.
James says, “The tongue is a fire” (speaks of fire in a negative way, that which destroys). Jas. 3:6
vs. 8, says the “tongue no man can tame”..
Therefore, “Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He shall lift you up.” Jas. 4:10 “But and if you suffer for Righteousness sake, happy are you.” I Pet. 3:14 (Such suffering is the results of righteousness, and not the cause of righteousness, so as not to confuse the two.) “and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled (righteousness guarantees the protection of the Lord.) Isaiah 8:12-13. Your senior relatives should be treated as God says, “I have treated you”. Matt 5:44, Rom 15:8. Else it only adds to the wall.
Walls are not of God. If there is genuine repentance, and apology it could provide a start at tearing down the walls. But, the past is in the past. It must be left there. No good can come of dredging up a past that no one can change. We all have things in our past, that we would do differently.
I have seen seniors go through so much from their children. There is a lady I know slightly who have children that have nothing to do with her. She has been in and out of nursing homes, and has bone cancer and looks terrible. I’ve seen another come up from NC and get his mother who was living very nicely with someone and it broke her heart, (yet she gave him Power of Atty.) and her son took all her money from the sale of a house, and now she is in a nursing home. They never hardly see her. I’ve seen others, suffer. A lady I knew way back in the late 80’s from a church I was in, and was in the beginning stages of Alzheimer’s, but, her children were not Christians, and even went to court to “get control” …and that they did. She went in a nursing home, and was dead by the time she was only 65. Now they can forget her.
Parenting is no easy task. We ALL make mistakes. Some things are caused by genetics and illnesses even that run in are genes, some things are caused by the learned behavior or our own parents that we pass down generation after generation, or else do the opposite of our parents, because we “know more than they did.” The list goes on and on. But, walls are caused by pain, and severe bitterness. And bitterness kills. “The heart knows his own bitterness; and a stranger does not intermeddle with his joy.” (The ‘heart’ that is spoken of here is the heart of a Christian. One who is a ‘stranger’ to God and His Ways has no knowledge of the burden that is carried or the ‘joy’ that resides in the heart of a true Christian.) Prov. 14:10
God goes even deeper in Acts. Acts 8:23 “For I perceive “(refers to the Holy Spirit in forming Peter of the exact cause, and not mere symptoms) “that you are in the GALL OF BITTERNESS ” (God calls this bitterness , GALL, and a condition of extreme wickedness), “and in the bond of iniquity” ( a bondage of greed for money, power, control of another). There are times when people in their anger always in the past, feeling they are right, the hurt one, and yes this word again, wallowing, can’t let go. There is something in staying in this state that soothes their wronged perception, and it is not of God. In essence they are helping Satan put a curse on that other person, but also themselves, and their own children. It must be broken..
I feel sorrow for the seniors I have met that are so alone. So many in the generation now in the 30’s, 40’s and 50’s are so selfish. My prayers are for these walls to come down in Jesus name. My prayer is for all these roots of bitterness and hate be put under the CROSS of Jesus and the blood HE shed for our sins. Seniors, need love. Feeling alone in the pain of illnesses or arthritis, and unable to be a part of your child’s life or grandchildren, is not of God. God is love. Love has to be given away. May we all get back to morality and sensitivity to another’s need. I know pastors that never even knew their parents. James Robison was adopted. He has such a peace of God that is so inspiring. He doesn’t dwell, “who was my mother, why did she hate me, give me away, etc.” He gave it all to God many, many years ago, and God has blessed him. We all need to stop having un-teachable spirits for these walls to come down. Remember Ronald Reagan? “Tear down this wall!” The same thing applies in families: “tear down these walls” (Reagan said to Russia)”in Jesus name.” It begins in forgiveness, of things we cannot change in our own families.