Monday, February 16, 2009

Shock & Awe

"We often suffer, but we are never crushed. Even when we don't know what to do, we never give up. In times of trouble, God is with us, and when we are knocked down, we get up again. We face death every day because of Jesus. Our bodies show what his death was like, so that his life can also be seen in us." (2 Corinthians 4:8-11 CEV)

Whom of us haven't endured unspeakable difficulties in our daily lives parenting our children with special needs? Have you, like me, cried out to the Lord, "ENOUGH!"? Some days we can't get our heads above water before another wave crashes over us.

Last Sunday, I spent time in the ER with my youngest. She had sustained a kidney injury as a result of falling backwards on top of another child. While I was complying with my instructions to keep her quiet for the week, I was notified by her school that she needs to see a doctor for other disorders and reactions as well. Add that to her severe allergies and I've got another child contending with special needs. What really had me "hard pressed on every side" was the fact that I had my own illness, pain and diagnosis that was seriously limiting me. Can't anyone in this household be "normal"? When will it ever end?

Let's be honest, we've all had these struggles. Wondering how the copious medical bills will get paid is a source of constant stress. Advocating with schools for what our children desperately need frustrates countless parents. Trying to make medical "experts" understand that nobody knows our child like we do, while still being open to the help that we sincerely need from them requires clarity beyond our own humanity.

So often I think, If people only knew what a mess I am... I must look ridiculous! But God tells me it isn't so. He allows the shock in our lives so that others may witness the awe that only He can provide. We may feel like we're barely putting one foot in front of the other, but He's holding us up to take those next steps, parading us in front of others to see the beauty He creates from our ashes.

Friend, you are not alone. Even in those times where we're knocked down, not knowing what to do next, if we cling to Him, something awesome can be produced from our adversity. He is with us and makes ALL things new!

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