Bethesda Senior Living Communities is a faith-based organization, so as a whole, we definitely believe in the power of prayer. We also believe in a lot of other things, including:
• The power of serving others with an open and gracious heart
• The importance of compassionate, experienced professional support at all levels of the senior care continuum
• That easy access to activities and social scenarios can help many older adults live a healthier and more vibrant lifestyle
• That loved ones and friends are critical partners with older adults in some of these things
Given all that, you probably won't be surprised to hear that we believe in the power that comes from family members and friends praying for seniors who are making homes in assisted living communities. Find out more about the potential power of prayer in a variety of situations as well as how you can pray for residents of assisted living communities — whether they're your relatives or you're just praying in general.
The Bible offers many words and stories about the power of prayer. "If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you," says John 15:7, and Mark 11:24 has a very similar sentiment.
It's not that prayer is a divine Amazon-style wish list that gets fulfilled as soon as we make it by God. But when we align our spirit with His via prayer, the results can be very powerful.
You only have to look at the example of Jesus to understand. When he was tired, he turned to prayer. When he was overwhelmed, he turned to prayer. When he was joyful or experiencing or seeing abundance, he turned to prayer. Prayer helped him get through, avoid temptation, keep his path straight and remain obedient to God's will despite the most overwhelming pressure in the history of the universe.
A lot of stuff happens through prayer that we can't explain, but science has demonstrated that prayer has power. One study indicated that prayer can increase self-control, which in turn can help someone achieve a goal or get through a challenging time.
Prayer can also be a powerful action you can do on behalf of others. Here are just a few reasons to pray for loved ones or others in an assisted living community.
• You care about them. If you're a person of faith who believes in the power of prayer and you care about someone in an assisted living community, why wouldn't you pray for them? Your time in prayer is such a wonderful, personal gift you can give another person, whether they know you did or not.
• They believe in prayer. Letting someone of faith know you're praying for them — and then following through — can be comforting and supportive to them. This is true whether they're in a time of need or enjoying a calm season in life.
• You find yourself worrying about them. Prayer can be a great way to turn your concerns over to God and remind yourself that He is taking care of your friend or loved one.
Want to pray for someone in assisted living — or for an assisted living community in general? Here are a few things you might pray for.
• That the loved one or residents enjoy their home. This is a great prayer if someone you know has moved into an assisted living community recently. While these communities often offer many benefits, it can be scary to make such a big change. Pray that the new resident has courage to join in boldly, that they're found by precious new friends among the residents and that they're able to find comfort and joy.
• For a specific medical or other need. If you know that your loved one is facing a challenge or worry and you're not sure what you can do to help, praying for them is always a great choice or first step. You might pray that they experience the peace that passes understanding as they deal with the issues and that those helping them — such as medical providers — are the right experience and outlook to support the most positive outcome possible in God's will.
• For assisted living residents in general during trying times. During times of general challenge, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, consider praying for those in assisted living communities. They may be dealing with fear about the issue or be experiencing isolation or inability to access resources they're used to because of the issue. Pray that God will strengthen them and present creative solutions and ways of getting through trying times.
• For the staff. At Bethesda Senior Living Communities, we know that many of our residents and their family members pray for our staff, and we appreciate it so much. If your loved one is in a senior living community, consider remembering the staff in prayer as a way to further support your family member or friend.