Heavy Burdened: Caregivers

Dear Church,

This Sunday’s preacher was the Rev. Dennis Wendling who is the chaplain at Medina Hospital, Cleveland Clinic. He shared that all is not well with our caregivers. Most caring and helping professions (police, nurses, clergy, retail, etc) are in a state of burn out.

Rev. Wendling shared his story of his own burn out in Disciple of Christ Churches and how he healed and recovered and found his way to becoming a chaplain. He shared that the only instance of someone taking care of Jesus is found in Mark 14:3-9. Jesus is two days away from the crucifixion. The whole time Jesus has been preaching and teaching and trying to find rest, but the crowds kept following him. Once he crossed the lake to pray, and the crowds showed up there on the mountain and then had the audacity to ask Jesus to feed them. Jesus had been telling his disciples that he was going to die, but they didn’t get it. Then a woman shows up in Mark 14:3-9, anoints him with perfume that would have cost a year’s worth of wages. This perfume would have had essential oils, healing properties. There was aroma therapy. There was elements of this woman’s touch, human contact that Jesus might have been lacking.

The disciples response to this was to complain and say that the perfume would have been better spent on the poor, not Jesus. To which Jesus replies, “I am not going to be with you much longer, but the poor will always be with you.”

And God is our ultimate caregiver. God has given us everything, and we can take it all for granted. Rev. Wendling shared that God does not require much of us; no big offering of cows and treasure. But simply to act justly, love kindness, and walk humbly with God (Micah 6:8). Imagine a world where we acted justly to our caregivers. We treated everyone with kindness. And we walked humbly together. Caregivers are not asking for much, just a simple acknowledgement and word of thanks. Treat them as human beings, for they are the definition of love.


We also held our annual meeting. In 2022, we passed a negative budget to the tune of -$16,000. We ended the year with around $4,000 to the positive. God has been good to us! A $20,000 swing is something to celebrate. God is continuing to provide for us in so many ways. Thank you for being a part of this thriving community. May we continue to act justly, love kindness, and walk humbly with one another into 2023 (which has a balanced budget for the first time in my ministry).

May God be with you until we meet again.

Yours in Christ,

-Pastor Luke

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