One of the ways I found I could bring much joy, and comfort to the elders and disabled I cared for was in music.
When they were having a difficult day, or a long night and could not sleep, or were having fears and anxieties, I would ask them if they would like me to put some quiet music on to listen to, and most of the time they would say yes. It is very difficult to find a radio station today that will play instrumental, inspirational, or quiet worship music; it consists mostly of rock, or Christian rock. It is geared for the young, and much of it I have to be honest, I cannot understand what they are saying, and perhaps it’s for the best. Many of the elders I cared for told me the same thing, they would rather hear nothing than what is played on radio today. People suffering chronic pain, or in grief find the loud rock lyrics, and heavy drum beats just add to the stress they are going through.
So, I would ask the folks what they liked to hear, and who their favorite musicians were, then I’d bring my own CD’s, tapes, or record music that especially seniors would enjoy. Quite often it would transform the atmosphere a great deal, and bring a peace, and quietness to their hearts. If I played some music softly by a bedside of someone in pain, or unable to sleep, they would drift of after a short spell of listening to the soothing sounds of music. When the Holy Spirit anoints something; it is timeless, and has the ability to minister to a soul no matter how long ago it was originally composed, or written.
Some of the elders I cared for had worked night shift jobs all their lives; and now that they were retired, they could not get off the “night shift” schedule, and they would be up most of the night (now I’m one of them also because I worked all night also). There’s no use in trying to get folks like this to stay in bed if they are night owls; just go with the flow, and find something to give them that can help in some way. At times, music was put on and was like added medicine to their souls.
At times sitting and listening to music with them would cause them to open up, and start sharing a memory that was precious to them, something that was bothering them that needed to be shared, for healing of their souls. Sometimes it would bring a roar of laughter when the story was still fresh and vibrant to them. The gleam in their eyes, and joy on their faces was worth it.
If you have a loved one you are caring for, and find at times they seem unable to be consoled; and are depressed, anxious, or worried, music can be a great tool to bring comfort to them, and much joy into the circumstances.