Monday, December 4, 2017

232. Prayer About Late-Stage Dementia

I couldn't go to sleep last night without completing this hymn, written in love for a couple that belongs to the church I attend. The husband showed up solo at Bible class yesterday morning, and when asked how he was doing, he said, "I think this is the worst I've ever been hurt." He went on to announce that his wife, who is in late stage dementia, has been put in hospice care. He expressed feelings that were almost too painful to live with, about looking in the eyes of the woman he has loved his entire life and seeing the life in them end, even while the body went on living. I wish I could say words that would bring comfort in his situation. Whether or not it will come true, I don't know, but that wish now takes the form of the following hymn. The original tune, titled LARETTA, has already been harmonized (I really couldn't sleep until it was finished!).
1. When those we love forget our name,
Remember us, Lord Jesus.
When serving them exhausts our frame,
Remember us, Lord Jesus.
Their agitation, mental strain,
Confusion, helplessness, and pain
Surpass our power to explain;
But You will make them whole again.
Remember us, Lord Jesus!

2. When no one gazes through their eyes,
Remember us, Lord Jesus.
When body lives, but spirit flies,
Remember us, Lord Jesus.
You, who descended into hell,
Forsake us not, who sink as well.
To hearts in bondage, tidings tell
Of peace that will all sorrow quell.
Remember us, Lord Jesus!

3. When all our taxing care is past,
Remember us, Lord Jesus.
When we have time to grieve at last,
Remember us, Lord Jesus.
Assure us that, restored by grace,
Our loved one has a dwelling place
Where, after we have run our race,
We’ll recognize each other’s face.
Remember us, Lord Jesus!

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