Tuesday, March 31, 2015

When Your Whole World Is Shaking

"God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging." Psalm 46:1-3 (NIV)

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 6  in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight." Proverbs 3:5-6 (NIV)

The first time I saw my son have a seizure, I was terrified.

We already suspected seizures and had an appointment on the calendar to see a neurologist, but witnessing a seizure up close and personal is scary.

Our boy is now on anti-seizure medication and it’s been over a year since the last episode. Still, the threat of it lies large and scary like a monster under the bed. You never know when he’ll have another one.

And it’s the most helpless feeling there is, watching the whole world shake in your baby’s eyes and knowing there’s not a thing you can do to stop it.

One morning as I started my prayer time, I was interrupted by my son’s cry, the one I recognized as the beginning of a seizure. I ran upstairs and found him in bed, semi-conscious and clearly in distress over not being able to gain control. Somehow he mustered the strength to say, “help me.”

I calmed him and held him until the seizure was over, counting the seconds carefully as I’ve learned to do.

When he stopped shaking, I picked him up and cradled him, all 75 pounds of him. He was already too big for me to carry and yet somehow I found the strength to help him to the bathroom. After a seizure, his left side is always temporarily paralyzed so he cannot stand, but I held him up. He leaned heavily on me but I was thankfully strong enough to keep him from falling.

When I made it back to my Bible, I read a verse that piqued my interest in the word “faithfulness.” As a huge Blue Letter Bible geek, I dove right into the Hebrew root meaning and discovered several definitions. The ancient Hebrew word “aman” can mean “to carry a child, to support, to prop up.”

It was a word that described exactly what I had done moments earlier for my child.

I’ve struggled with insecurity and anxiety my whole life. Being the mom of a special needs child has added more fuel to the fire. There are times I feel weary, helpless and like an utter failure.

But every single time my world starts to shake, every time I think I cannot stand, there’s One who comes to my rescue, One who is able to keep me from falling.

Too many times I don’t even realize how God is supporting me. Too often I pride myself on holding myself up, standing solid on my own two feet. But the truth is my legs are faulty--paralyzed at times. They will not support me.

I’ve learned to cry out for help, just as my son did in the midst of his seizure.

When I cry out to the Lord, He always rushes to my aid. He calms and comforts and carries. And I do the only thing I can do. I lean.

If there’s one thing about being a special needs parent that I’m most grateful for, it is this: eyes opened to see my own limitations. I’ve learned that my own foundation is not secure. I cannot do this alone because I would fall flat on my face.

But that’s the beauty. We don’t have to do it alone. We don’t have to struggle just to keep our feet on the ground. We need only trust in God and He will do this thing. He is our helper, our support, our unshakable foundation.

“Father, God, and ruler of the unshakable kingdom, we cry out to you this day. Sometimes the struggles are more than we can bear. It seems impossible to go on. We want to trust you, we want to believe, but we are plagued by our own pride and independence. Help us to remember, Lord, that even when the ground moves beneath our feet, You are unshakable. You are the Solid Rock and Firm foundation. Help us not to rely on our own wisdom or understanding, but to trust enough to lean heavy upon you.

When life is uncertain, we may shake and tremble. But you, Lord--you do not.”

1 comment: