Q: I’ve worked in a nursing home for almost 20 years, and the hardest part of my job is watching people dump their relatives here and then never come back to visit them. Why are people so insensitive? Even if someone has dementia they still deserve our love, don’t they? — R.M.
A: Yes, they most certainly do. I too have been saddened whenever I’ve visited a nursing home or other care facility, and the staff has asked me to see someone who never has a visitor (which I’ve always been glad to do).
After all, if we were in their condition (as any of us could be some day), we wouldn’t want to be abandoned or forgotten by those we once loved and cared for, would we? Even if we didn’t remember their visit later, it still could be the high point of our day. Jesus’ words apply as much to this situation as to any other: “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you” (Matthew 7:12).
Remember: God has not abandoned them, and neither should we. In fact, the Bible says he has a special concern for those who can’t take care of themselves — the very young, the old, the poor, the disabled, etc. And one of the ways he shows his concern for them is through our acts of love. The Bible says, “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress” (James 1:27).
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You may not be able to do much about the thoughtlessness of others (except to pray for them). But ask God to help you make up for their failure by your kindness and encouragement to those you help each day for Christ’s sake.
Write “My Answer,” Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; or go to BillyGraham.org.