Whenever I had my first child, I subscribed to one of those sites that sends you emails once a week about your baby’s progress. It was a wonderful tool with Laynie because she was always doing more than what the site suggested. So naturally when Gideon’s due date got close, I set up the automatic emails again.
When Gideon arrived into world, every doctor suggested something was wrong, but no one could diagnosis him. So like most people in my situation, I was in a bit of denial. Around month three of receiving those emails, I found myself weeping every time I read them. He was so far behind already and I just couldn’t handle facing that truth. I quickly realized those emails were dragging me further into a pit of despair. But it wasn’t until we got Gideon’s diagnosis (at 7 months old) that I actually unsubscribed from the site. It was so nice to open my inbox and not be reminded of what my child wasn’t accomplishing.
Interestingly enough, I continued to randomly receive those emails; they usually came about every other month. Most of the time I chose not to read them, and would again go through the process to unsubscribe. Nevertheless, they kept coming and eventually I began to read them again. But this time I noticed that I was receiving these emails when I was already having an emotionally rough day.
This morning I chose to sleep late and in doing so I missed my quiet time, didn’t have time to shower, and had to rush to get Gideon to therapy. We got stuck in traffic and as I sat there frustrated, I opened my email and this was at the top of the list.
I showed this to my husband and we just laughed. Gideon may never do any of those things and if he does, we are certainly a long way off. Satan will bring us down by any means necessary, won’t he? All the more reason we need to be on alert. 1 Peter 5:8 says, “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”
I’m very aware of my weak areas. I think that’s why I continue to randomly receive these emails. Satan loves to attack my thoughts and emotions. In fact, I remember after Gideon turned one, I started volunteering in the church nursery every other month. This wasn’t a bad thing, but Satan used it as another reminder of what my child was not able to do. After all, kids Gideon’s age were already walking and he couldn’t even sit up on his own. I realized that unless I daily developed my relationship with the Lord, I will be at risk of falling back into that pit of despair. John 15:5 says “Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.”
And that’s the truth isn’t it? Apart from God we can’t do anything. I can’t daily raise a child that I know someday I will bury, apart from God. There’s just no other way to make it through another day.
I feel the need to close by saying Gideon is who God made him to be… and that’s hard for people to understand. I’ve wrestled with that truth myself. I wish I could tell you that I knew the answer. The fall of man, free will, sin…. there’s lots of probable explanations. But not even the righteous man Job received a reason for his suffering, so why should I?
Truthfully, we’ll never know this side of Heaven why Gideon has to suffer with this disorder. But I can promise you this, God will redeem his circumstances. (Romans 8:28) And God will be glorified because Gideon’s life will reach the masses. And as Satan seeks to destroy me by any means necessary, I will tell the story of God’s all sufficient grace until there is no breath left in my body…and I too will do so by any means necessary.