Monday, June 30, 2014

What are you afraid of?

   He will shelter you with his wings.
    His faithful promises are your armor and protection.
Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night,
    nor the arrow that flies in the day.
Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness,
    nor the disaster that strikes at midday. Psalm 91:4-6 (NLT)

Before David even had a diagnosis, he had many symptoms of his Borderline Personality and Anxiety Disorders.  Because he was such a caring person, we thought no one would ever be afraid of him.  We were more concerned about him with self-injury because he was so hard on himself.   We were still ignorant about what mental illness could do to a person.  We’ve all heard that ignorance is bliss.  Well, I contend that ignorance is hell.

Once, when we were gone, things escalated between him and a sibling.  We heard both kids tell different stories of a volatile situation at best.  We should not have taken both sides of the story with equal consideration, but we did.  This resulted in one of those bad parenting moments with ramifications down the road.  If I wrote a book on Bad Parenting Moments 101, this would be one of those big ones.  We were still pretty clueless about what David had going on inside his brain.  We were in the roller coaster stage (things would get better for a little bit only to get really bad again).  We were hoping it would get better, but not all that hopeful.  That may be why we considered both sides equally, but it ultimately led to one child being very much afraid of the other.  This is a tough story to tell because we messed up.  To top it off we were not even aware that we messed up. 

A few years later David’s sibling told us how he slept with a bat under his bed.  A bat!  Really!  This quiet, reserved, and gentle child of ours had a bat under his bed.  We felt like awful parents for several reasons.  I won’t go there, but you can just imagine the self-examination that followed this revelation.  I can understand why he didn't come to us.  After all, we weighed David's word and his equally.  

Thankfully, I believe this child did come to understand that had we known we would have helped him through this fear and protected him.  We offered to do whatever we could to help him through the COLLATERAL DAMAGE this incident had caused and when David passed away this sibling even spoke of David’s caring spirit at his memorial service.
Not counting some of the things we learned as parents, I thought of this story when considering my fears.
Do I carry or hide a bat anywhere?
Am I afraid of things out of my control? 
What about not being there when my special needs child gets older? 
What about getting ill myself? 
What about the financial toll?
What about….

The verse above doesn’t say TRY not to be afraid.  It says DON’T be afraid. 
It also says He promises to COVER YOU, PROTECT YOU, AND SHELTER YOU!
What more could I ask for?  Nothing

Prayer:  Lord, Help me to trust you when I am afraid.  Also, help me to learn from my bad parenting choices even when it’s painful to look at them.  Lastly, remind me that you are there to shelter and protect me.

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Photo courtesty of: by Graur razvan iounut


  1. I hold a lot of fear and needed to hear this today. Thank you!

  2. You are most welcome Aimee. I needed to hear it for myself too.