Friday, July 25, 2014

I Was On the Way to Help Toby Mac, Then I Wasn't

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 "What you ought to say is, “If the Lord wants us to, we will live and do this or that.”
James 4:15, NLT

When you live in the world of special needs you must keep your life open to unexpected changes; at all times. My daughter adores Toby Mac. She would most likely do whatever it takes to get there to see him perform! Music is a soul soother to her and her autism and Toby Mac is on her top five.

Of course, because of this great love for Toby Mac, I thought I would be safe in signing up to help him out by selling merchandise and other various things when he came to our city. Well, I was wrong. The only thing that would keep my daughter away from Toby Mac was a greater fear. In this instance her fear surpassed her love.

Because of autism, my daughter has some extreme and at times random (to me) sensory issues. Yet at times her greater love for things can surpass her greater fear or pain of the sensory overload. It is not an exact science so it feeds the unpredictability of our life. An example of this is the loudness of a concert, it is a bit painful but she endures for the greater love of the music or the show.

On this particular day we had a major storm system come through our town. It included very loud rain and booming thunder. It was very disturbing to her. It was something she was not equipped to handle. Though she loves Toby Mac and always wanted to attend a concert, she could not go through with it because of the current tormenting storm.

I then had to cancel and disappoint people yet again. Another commitment broken adding to my lack of reliability. I really hate that because I only commit when I believe I am absolutely sure I can finish the task well, however, my life will not even allow things like this if other unknown factors, like a bad storm, enter in.

All our lives come with a certain amount of unpredictability but the parents with special needs children come with more. I am learning to live open handedly with my plans. I try to give this up front speech about it now when I try to commit as well because more of us would do well to live more open-handedly.

James tells us to say, "Lord willing we will do this or that." Therefore as a parent of a special needs child I just have to be okay with this because I believe God would have us put those He gave us charge over, first priority. We are not to neglect our children but serve them first. Cancelling the concert was serving my daughter.

Prayer: Lord help us live with our hands open not clinching too tightly to things we cannot control. Let us keep our hope and trust in You alone.



  1. I do not know much about Toby Mac or the kind of person he is, but I hope that he will see this and consider meeting your daughter in person next time he's in town.

    As parents, it's not always easy to know when to respect those kinds of fears and when to encourage our children to move out of their comfort zone. Sometimes we don't always make the right call, but what I feel is most important is that others don't judge us. You know your child better than anyone else and whether she would be able to handle the situation at that time. For example, when my son was little, we tried to attend a Christian music concert by someone I had known briefly in college. He could not take it at all and we had to leave immediately. Now, he would probably be able to tolerate a few minutes. In the future, your daughter may grow out of her fear of storms or she may not. Either way, you will try to do what's best for her and that's what every parent of a special needs child wants everyone else to know. We really are doing what we think is best.

  2. Good post and reminder! In the interest of inclusion and full disclosure, this is true for all of us! My day just got rearranged for me by circumstances totally out of my control! Great reminder!

  3. Thank you both for your comments!! It is definitely a life we live full of change and I hope eventually it will get easier on them all! Hugs to you both and praying! Thank you so much for taking the time to comment!