Friday, October 12, 2012

I Would Gladly Take His Place

But He was hurt for our wrong-doing. He was crushed for our sins. He was punished so we would have peace. He was beaten so we would be healed.  All of us like sheep have gone the wrong way. Each of us has turned to his own way. And the Lord has put on Him the sin of us all. ~ Isaiah 53:5-6, NLV ~

Every once in awhile, our family is blessed by being invited to participate in online hemophilia research surveys.  It can be a terrific little help in that most of the surveys offer $50 or $100 as compensation.  So when one showed up in my e-mail this week, I was glad to participate.  What I didn't anticipate was that it would leave me in tears.

"On a scale of 1 to 10 how affected do you feel by the desire to remove your child's pain," the survey question asked.  The stinging tears snuck up on me from behind.  I would do anything to remove his pain.  How many times I've asked, "Why can't it be me, Lord?"  One of the hardest parts of being the parent of a child with a diagnosis of this type is seeing the inordinate amounts of physical suffering your child endures.  And some of that hurt is induced by the over 2,500 IV needle pokes my husband and I have had to perform when administering infusions 3 times per week to help sustain our son's life.  Watching your child suffer is horrible.  Being unable to do anything to end the pain is heartbreaking.  Being the one who has to inflict some of that sorrow is mind-numbing and awful.

At the same time, I find this to be an incredible blessing that allows me to connect to God in a unique way.  Our Father knows all too well what it is like to watch His son suffer.  He knows that His son's anguish was all for the good, just like I know my son's painful infusions are meant for his ultimate well-being.  The Father could have stopped the crucifixion that tortured His son just like I could stop the IV's, so my Adonai understands the angst of having to allow the right stream of events go forth.  He has heard, "My God!  My God!  Why have Your forsaken me," just like I have heard, "Mommy, make them stop!"  Oh, how the Father's heart was broken into a million pieces just like mine!

At the same time, while I often marvel at the insane love that would take my place and endure the torture that should have been upon me, I can grasp it a little bit better as a mother who would gladly take the place of the son she loves too.  There are days where I wish I could just hold my son in my arms forever, and have it be all better.  Jesus stretched out his arms on a cross because he knew he was the only one who could make it better for all of us forever.

My heart breaks for my son.  The only thing that keeps me filled with joy in spite of the pain is the knowledge that there is One who has walked a mile in my shoes, and who lavishes me with His compassion.  I pray that this intimate anguish never leaves me where it found me.

PRAY:  Thank You, Lord, for walking a mile in my shoes.  Uphold me and my sweet family as we walk this painful path.

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