I can remember joking with those close to me when I was pregnant with our son, "God would never give me a child with hemophilia. I have the world's shakiest hands, and He knows I could never get a needle in my child's vein with hands like that!"
We knew that there was a chance that I might carry the gene for hemophilia, but we still believed it could never happen to us.
Suddenly, when we found ourselves to be the parents of a boy with this severe bleeding disorder, our thoughts turned to the frightening places that so many parents do when their child is newly diagnosed, "What if I am not enough for this child? What if my hands ARE too shaky to administer the life-saving clotting factor this child needs? What if we cannot financially provide for this child's astronomically expensive medicine? How will we do this?
For those who have never faced those questions about their own child, the reality can seem like everyone's worst nightmare. These are the things that keep you up at night, make the stomach churn, provoke you to irritability at times.
The initial human response is to go into full battle mode, educating yourself, exploring treatment options, connecting with other parents and advocacy groups. You attend every meeting, participate in every therapy, take every measure at home to ensure that you can properly care for this child. All of these are very good and important measures.
However, like a 2 x 4 upside the head, it seems inevitable that something awful happens when you are standing right beside your child, having done everything humanly possible for them. For us it was the time he fell out of the stroller right in front of the hematologist, onto the cement hospital floor, causing bleeding simultaneously from the mouth and nose. Another time it was the $1,500 bill we got in the mail from our treatment center with absolutely no ability to pay. Yet, another time came when he simply got into the car after school one day and said, "Ouch. My hip hurts."
Every one of these scenarios represented the height of stress and crisis. But this is where we met God. He was there, quietly, reassuringly whispering to us,
When Paul wrote the words in Philippians, Chapter 4, he was sending incredible encouragement to one of the young churches he had planted. The message he shared with the church in Philippi is no less true for us today.
We will never be enough, but God IS. So keep your eyes focused on Him. Not yourselves. Not life's trials. Not the seemingly insurmountable sorrows. Not the distracting world around you. Keep your eyes focused on the One who can provide for all of your needs, your child's needs, and the needs of everyone around you.
What blessed reassurance we have that no matter how inadequate we are, no matter how big our challenges are, the God who loves us is bigger still!
PRAY: Yahweh, nothing is beyond You! Thank You for reminding us, when we feel so small in caring for our special children.
~ Barb Dittrich