Spending a week with my ‘special needs’ brother, is always a challenge. However, this week was probably the most severe challenge, as he had mislaid, lost, or had stolen, all his IDs, money and valuables. I was the only one available to assist him in finding replacements.
We’d returned from visiting his friend and having lunch together. He hung his small black bag, which contained all his valuables, on the back of a chair in his room, and went to the bathroom. After him I also went to the bathroom and then he had to hurry off to his physiotherapy appointment. I went to see some of the people in charge in his Residential Care facility. When we returned his small bag was no where to be found. We searched the room, everywhere, NOTHING. Some carers came in and searched the room and also asked questions, again, nothing.
A person with a degree of dementia could have taken it without realising it was not their own.
A person may have come in with malicious intent and taken it.
Either way, it is difficult to know what could have happened. My brother was quite distressed, and it is easy for him to become really angry in those situations, as he cannot easily express his feelings.
When we were alone in his room, I turned to my brother who is also a believer, and said, “Please listen. God has not changed. Only some things are missing. Remember Romans 8:28” and I had to read it to him. “we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him. Let us look for the GOOD.” We prayed together and it was time for me to leave.
Next day I ran around to report the loss to the police to enable me to get replacements of lost IDs, and also got some money from his bank account for him. It was more than just tiring. I was exhausted. Visited my brother during the afternoon and explained what I had done. He was delighted.
Following morning I turned up to assist with a visit to the Optometrist, only to be told that his little bag had been located in his secure (i.e. locked) drawer. Apparently he had put it in there while I was in the bathroom and none of us, during the search asked him to open that drawer. He had not remembered it.
The amazing thing in that whole episode was that my brother did not become uncontrollably angry. With his disability it is very difficult for him to control that. However, IMMEDIATELY turning him to the Word of God, managed to get him focused on what was really important.
No matter what the situation, the Word of God has the solution. Remember Psalm 119:105 “Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.” With his limited comprehension, God made this true, also for my brother.