The Spouse of an Essential Worker

Posted on April 23rd, 2020

My husband is an essential worker, and I worry that he is being exposed to this virus daily. He works in a facility with thousands of people, and any one of them could have been exposed to the virus or could have the virus. As much as I fret, I understand that my husband needs to do his job. Without him doing his job, others would not be able to have the supplies and things they need.

We have taken extra precautions to try and safeguard ourselves during this time. We change clothes and wash our hands whenever we may leave, and my husband does this every time he comes home. Shoes are left at the door and not worn in the house. My husband wears a mask at work. Even with all of this, the worry is still there.

It’s a scary time, and I can imagine you other spouses of essential workers out there having the same fears and putting the same practices in place. Despite the worry, this is our opportunity as a spouse to show our support and lift them up.

Here are three ways to help and support our essential worker spouse.

  1. Pray, pray, and pray some more.

I pray for my husband and other essential workers daily. Stressors are high right now for these workers. My husband has been putting in many more hours than normal. Lifting up your spouse in prayer is one of the best ways to show our support. We also pray together because there is much comfort in prayer. Share your worries with the Lord; encourage your spouse to do the same. We tend to feel more relaxed after we have prayed.

  1. Offer to help as much as you can.

Take over more chores at home allowing him a chance to destress when he gets home instead of worrying about dinner, dishes or other household tasks that can cause extra stress.

  1. Read the Bible.

Reading the Bible has been critical for our spiritual health during this time.

Isaiah 41:10 says “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

It brings me great comfort to think of Jesus standing next to my husband as he works. To think of Him standing next to the ER nurse as she helps a sick patient. Standing behind the grocery clerk as he helps a mom ring up her groceries. Thinking of Jesus being in all those places makes me reflect on the blessing it was to celebrate Easter during this time. What an amazing reminder of what God has done for us and His immeasurable love for us.

When I get extra anxious, I like to read from Luke chapter 12.

Jesus said, “Do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life?… Do not be afraid, little flock, for your father has been pleased to give you the kingdom.” (Luke 12:22-24, 32).

As spouses of an essential worker, we may still worry, and that is okay. Keep praying. Keep helping. Keep reading your Bibles. This is just a point in time, and it will pass. We will be telling our grandchildren and great grandchildren about the time we were quarantined at home many years later. Jesus overcame the grave, and one day we will get to celebrate with Him in Heaven. Until that day, be sure to count your blessings and thank God for all the people in your life including our essential workers!

Bethany Kuhlmann, DCE
Congregational Services – Lutheran Family Service

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