May 16, 2011

When God says no

I still remember the first time I saw Grant. I was eight weeks pregnant. As the ultrasound technician zoomed-in on the image on the monitor, I could see something moving.

"There's your baby," the technician announced, "And there is the heart."

My eyes blinked back tears as I watched the miracle forming in my womb. In that moment I fiercely declared to myself that I would do anything for this child - my child. Every breath I breathed until he was born was filled prayers to God for a healthy baby.

A few months after Grant was born, I began to notice signs of some developmental delays. My pleas to God for healthy, "typical" child surged in intensity. During the emotional journey of locating the source of Grant's developmental problems, I begged God to shield his mind.

I would cry out to God on a daily basis, "Lord, I don't care if Grant's a little behind but please, please protect his mind."

On February 22, 2011 at 12:27pm, my phone rang and the nurse on the other end told me that Grant's Fragile X test came back "abnormal". I knew then that despite all of my crying, begging, pleading, and bargaining, God had chosen to answer my request with a no.

I was shocked. I felt abandoned and very alone. I spent the next few weeks asking "why?!?", crying myself to sleep, and battling intense jealousy of other families with "normal" children. I was hurt that God would purposefully choose to give Grant a life filled with the difficulties that come with Fragile X Syndrome. I fully knew what Proverbs 13:12 was talking about:

Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but fulfilled longing is the tree of life.

I felt completely hopeless and my heart was sick with pain, anger, sadness, and envy. I felt that my longing had been denied. The question that kept turning in my mind was "why would God say no to my earnest pleas?"

Then it dawned on me... Who am I to think I should be saved from such pain? There are so many people who are dealing with extremely painful issues: autism, cerebral palsy, down syndrome, epilepsy, cancer, family illnesses and death, starvation, abuse, etc. Who am I to be spared? God has a purpose for me, Grant, Aaron and Wesley. He has a plan for our family. I have heard and read Jeremiah 29:11 countless times but now I must lean on it's promises:

'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the LORD, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'

I am learning each day to dwell not on the unknown of Grant's future but to instead focus on what is known about God and His promises. While I know the pain will never completely go away (in fact, there are days when the pain surges to new level), I am learning to breath again - to smile from the inside again. I know that God will be glorified and I pray that His strength will shine through my (and Grant's) weaknesses... and that is the best purpose any man can fulfill. 

. . . . . . . . . .

But [God] said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 2 Corinthians 12:9
. . . . . . . . . . 

'For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,' declares the LORD. 'As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. 

As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. 

You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands.'  Isaiah 55:8-12


1 comment

  1. This is so well written and so true in the life of a Christian. Thank you for taking so much time to write it.


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