Now that my two older kids are grown and D16 is in school, I do often wonder what’s next for me? Should I get a job? Should I go back to school?
There is another role for women like me to fill, and that is the ministry of having time. I learned about this by watching my friend Karen. She did not go back to work when her children grew up. Some days she helps her husband with his handyman business–she runs to the hardware store for him or helps lift things or does the painting part of a project–and some days she takes her elderly neighbors to their doctor visits or shopping or takes a meal to someone.
When I flew back and forth to her city to take care of my dad during his final weeks of life, she was always available to pick me up and drop me off at the airport and to administer various forms of friendship therapy to me over the six weeks I was there–and she was available on my timetable.
Several times that I know of–and probably many more that I don’t–she has opened her tranquil, sunshine-filled home to friends of her children when they are going through hard times–marital difficulties, family break-ups. Karen’s sensitive hospitality and warmth surely does them good. Without preaching, she radiates a sense of hope.
People like her may not do big things, but they add kindness and decency to the world. As always, I find myself wanting to be like her “when I grow up.”