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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Review of Because You Care: Spiritual Encouragement for CaregiversReview of Because You Care: Spiritual Encouragement for Caregivers

Review of Because You Care:  Spiritual Encouragement for Caregivers

by Cecil Murphey and Twila Belk

I am a Mother of 3 children, the grandmother of 2 with another on the way, the daughter of an 80-year old mom, and for the past 5+ years I have been a caregiver for a home-bound, bed ridden, now 99-year old beautiful lady, who still lives in the home she and her beloved built in 1956!  I have a deep sense of respect and honor for those in society who are "older" (and, for the most part, wiser). As a young person I volunteered in a local hospital and a nursing home so I could be around the older (and wiser) ones.

It is no wonder then that when this short, yet poignant little book Because you Care:  Spiritual Encouragement for Caregivers came my way I was intrigued. I absorbed it cover-to-cover in one reading.  What I found were passionate and precious people in Cecil Murphey and Twila Belk (along with a few others), both of whom have spouses who require long-term and continual care.  This is absolutely NOT a book of self-pity or of loathing such an awesome responsibility.  Rather, it is a story of love, of sacrifice, of commitment to be true to their vows of "in sickness and in health".  Neither Murphey or Belk purpose it is easy; rather it is a daunting task, only possible with God's help and through His strength.

The accompanying photographs by Betty Fletcher offer a sense of peace and calm in the midst of hurt, confusion, pain...even guilt.  The transparency of these authors creates a support group, of sorts, for those of us who have been, are or will be caregivers at some point.  Watching their loved ones struggle through serious physiological problems while attempting to balance some normalcy of life speaks directly to the heart and soul of fellow sojourners...offering hope where there seems little and comfort where it is most needed.

I encourage you to purchase several copies:  one to keep for yourself and others to give away.  This is a bittersweet kind of read~ tears of sadness coupled with the joy of memories!