Today's daily devotion

I’m Not the Only One

. . . we may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine.—ROMANS 1:12 [NRSV]

When my father-in-law moved from Minnesota to a senior living residence near us in Wisconsin, we began worshipping at a church close to him. They have a coffee shop with bistro tables to encourage socializing. We hadn’t been going there too long when we met another couple about our age. My wife introduced herself, “Hi, I’m Candy. What’s your name?” The woman smiled. “My name is Carol and this is my husband Joe.” Candy replied, “Good to meet you. You’ll probably have to tell me your names again. I have Alzheimer’s and may not remember.” With a stage whisper, Carol leaned toward Candy and said, “So do I.”

Yes, both Candy and Carol frequently requested prompting to remember names, but an instant bond formed between them, and between me and Joe as well. We have shared about the support services we find helpful. We have compared notes about doctors and medications. We have shared the history that led to the Alzheimer’s diagnoses. We have shared how we have handled our unique challenges. Most importantly, when Candy and Carol see each other, they exchange the smiles of recognizing they share this journey.

Since her diagnosis, Candy has readily told people she has Alzheimer’s, even strangers in the checkout line at the grocery store. While Carol doesn’t hide it, she’s more private. As our wives’ caregivers, Joe and I affirm their comfort levels so they feel free in social interaction. Knowing you are not the only one is remarkably encouraging.

God of encouragement, thank you for those with whom we connect on our journeys.

Adapted from
Strength & Grace Magazine

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