Is this what freedom looks like?

So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.
John 8:36 

chained doorI peek through the curtained window on the locked door. Any potential escapee on the other side? No. All clear.

I key in the secret 4-digit code, watch for the green light, then open the door in the brief seconds available.

It clamps shut behind me. Locked again. It will soon be tested, one resident at a time, to see if the magic door will open when pushed. It won’t.

Do they feel trapped inside this door?

She looks trapped to me. Wrapped tightly in two blankets and her comforter lies the pretty 71-yr-old lady that on the outside still looks mostly like my mother.

She’s locked in. Today (again) she has refused to get out of bed. She takes in no food. I bring her toothbrush to her, in bed, but she keeps dropping it. So I brush her teeth for her as best I can.

I offer her a water bottle with a straw, but at the moment she’s unsure of what to do with it. I say, “Open your mouth, Mama, like this,” and I demonstrate what an open mouth looks like.

She mimics me. I slip the straw in her mouth. But it sits there idle because she can’t remember to suck.

This looks like slavery to me.

I hear voices outside Mama’s open door. Mrs. W walks in. She is confused. She reads Mama’s name outside the door so she knows this is not her own room, but she doesn’t know what to do about it. She locked herself out of her own room; she can’t get back in.

I say, “I’ll take care of it for you.” I go find an aide with a key. We get Mrs. W safely back inside her own room.

When I get back to Mama’s room, she’s asleep again. So I sit down by her bed.

And think about freedom.


True freedom isn’t about unlocked doors.
It isn’t about making decisions independently.
It isn’t about having multiple options from which to choose.

Freedom is about TRUTH (John 8:32).

And Truth is a person (John 14:6). It’s Jesus.
Jesus  IS  freedom.

My mom knows Him,
and even though she may not remember,
He never forgets.

Her full freedom—
seemingly dormant to outsiders at the moment—
is just around the corner.

When the Lord unlocks her spirit from her body,
she’ll fly
home free.


I hear her stir. She recognizes her need to use the bathroom. She hasn’t forgotten how this afternoon. I walk her withering and trembling body to the bathroom. I turn on the faucet for her to wash her hands afterwards.

I notice her security bracelet is so loose on her wrist that I can wriggle it off.

So I unshackle her. I set the bracelet on her dresser instead of her arm.Security-bracelet

She doesn’t need it.

She’s no longer a candidate for wandering. She’s free from that temptation, that confusion. Her ticket to the fullest freedom can’t be too long now in coming. She’ll be ready to catch that train when it pulls in.

I can’t always explain why freedom looks like it does. But freedom is His promise (John 8:36). So I hold on to it for my mama. And for me.

I tell her I am leaving now.I love you, Mama. You are such a sweet mother.”

She smiles back. She says, “I enjoyed you coming. We have such wonderful friends.” I give her a kiss. She tries to give me one back.

I walk down the hall. I punch in the 4-digit code and the magic door lets me out.

Outside, the sun warms my skin. I am reminded I know Freedom. And Freedom knows me.

Indeed.

* * *

In what surprising places have you found freedom?

Check out the inspirational posts at Charlotte and Ginger’s for Spiritual Sunday.

Spiritual Sundays at Bloggerspirit

18 comments:

Jenna said...

wow, Mom. beautiful post.. made me cry!

Lisa notes... said...

I cried, too, Jenna. I do love your Nana and my mother so much. I know you do, too.

Ginger~~Enchanting Cottage said...

I have never been through this. I will pray for your mom and for you. Thank-you for sharing this touching post today.
God Bless,
Ginger

Virginia said...

Touching post...

Prayers of Saint Augustine:
God of life, there are days when the burdens we carry chafe our shoulders and wear us down; when the road seems dreary and endless, the skies gray and threatening; when our lives have no music in them and our hearts are lonely, and our souls have lost their courage. Flood the path with light, we beseech you; turn our eyes to where the skies are full of promise.

I'll keep you in my prayers....
Sweet Blessings,
Virginia

Laurie M. said...

What a hard thing you're going through, both of you...

Saleslady371 said...

Very thought provoking. Though she may not remember Him, He never forgets...love it! Happy Independence Day and may the Lord continue to strengthen you and give His peace.

bonnie said...

I was touched by your post today. I want your Mom to have independance again and fly away home. I want her to have a new body and new mind too. She will be free of her pain. I will pray for you too during this difficult time.

elizabeth said...

This is beautiful Lisa. I will pray for your sweet mama right now.

godsown said...

Your post brought tears to my eyes!
And once again thanks for opening my eyes to see the othe side of this road you are on.

If you don't mind...I want to translate your blogpost and try to post it in our "bulletin" from my work.

Blessings
Bernice

Whidbey Woman said...

This really touched me, for two reasons: One, I work in a skilled nursing center. Second, my mother in law has Alzheimer's. It is advancing and eventually she will need to be in a facility. My father in law has lost a lot of his freedoms in taking care of her. But you are right, the most important freedom is the freedom we have in Christ. God bless.

Lisa notes... said...

Thanks, all, for the prayers for my family. I always appreciate them; God is sustaining us through them.

I love the St. Augustine quote, Virginia. Thanks for blessing me with it.

Bernice—yes, do whatever you would like with the post. And again, thank you for all you do in working with the elderly. I know you are a blessing to many.

Whidbey Woman—you have much on your plate. I am sending up a prayer for you and your family, too. I know God will be faithful to us all because that’s just the way He is. We are blessed.

Becky@ Daily On My Way To Heaven said...

I learn from you, my sister...I will love my mom more "actively".

Much love.

A Lil Story said...

Beautiful Post~ our true Freedom is never lost =) Sending prayers for your family today! thank you for sharing.

Lily

Charlotte said...

Wow, this brought tears to my eyes. Your mother is blessed to have you for her daughter. Freedom will come for her and for us all.
Blessings,
Charlotte

Stephani said...

There are no words to respond to this, but I wanted you to know that I was profoundly moved.

Brenda said...

So sweet. You produced a couple tears from me. Your mom is so lucky to have you.

Lisa notes... said...

I am the one blessed to have had my mom for so long. I wish I could be even a fraction as sweet and loving as she has been to so many people her whole life. I'm such a slacker compared to her...

Anita said...

I feel I am getting to know you backward Lisa, but knowing where you've been helps me know who you are.
As I sit here crying, knowing that this journey has been a difficult one make me glad to have found you.
Thank you for sharing.

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