Truth

Truth

            I wince as high heeled strappy shoes bite my heels.  I kneel to rub and find relief.  As I straighten I see my old friend’s husband he stands frozen as wedding guests whizz past him oblivious to the gaiety around.

“Hi, how’s it going?” I inquire. He startles; recognition uncurls. The weight of his 6 foot- 4- inch frame crashes into mine. Unaware of the awkwardness of the embrace, he remains motionless.

“Where’s your wife?” I probe.  Composure crumbles.  Reeling, my held breathe escapes as I prop him onto a high stool.  The moment his body touches the support, he spews forth his daughter’s neuro-psychologist report. It’s devastating.  Number after number daggers of 40 and 45 pierce him as he spoke, his face contorted with pain.  He manages to say his wife left them unable to deal with “such” a damaged child.  He was left to stand in the wake.

Silent, I unfold a scrap of well-worn paper with a simple drawing which had brought profound relief and healing to me.

His eyes transfix on the picture as I smooth it against the crisp white table cloth.

flower-1-for-truth

Time stops, my voice a whisper. All the while, the celebration continues around us.

“Your child and the fullness of her beauty did not change upon the addition of a number given to you by some human paid to quantify and qualify life.  No where in creation is there a number written on a child.  Numbers and labels spoken to you are not to be written into her heart or, yours.

You will see but a glimpse of the beauty she possesses here on earth. The depths of her is yet to be revealed.

Each person is created before time, knit together in love and sent to fulfill their own purpose.  Her purposes are not your own.  Do not be confused; your daughter does not belong to you; she is a gift given only for a moment by a great and glorious God for His perfect will.

I unfold the rest of the picture.  It’s edges crackle, reluctant to expose its treasure.

flower-2-for-truth

“Consider the rest of the picture she is not left alone to drift. The stem travels down strong and steady with one purpose to find strength rooted and grounded in Christ.  See the roots, as she withstands adversity; they grow deeper.  I tell you there are not many on this earth who will have as strong of roots as hers.”

Do you see a place on this flower for a number?  Would you damage its flawlessness to etch into its delicate petals?  No, let her beauty stand as a testimony to the great God who gave you her.” I implore.

His red eyes scraped mine, searching “What purposes- what are you talking about?  Did you not hear her IQ scores; 40, 45, 50? What can God do with that?” His arms fall in defeat, they crash against the table, the paper stands.

I push on as I recall the discovery of this truth for my own life, it unfolds as I speak- a crackle of pain emerges.

“Each person is sent to their own specific people group only they can reach.  Can you touch the hearts of all the therapist and evaluators with your courage?  Can you lift up someone with a flash of your smile?  Why are you remarkable?  Her very existence and valor to conquer each and every challenge is an inspiration.   Can you reach other people who are mentally challenged- will they trust you and know your common struggle?”

“She can do that and more.  Your wife will miss out on daily miracles; you will be gifted to see.  Your daughter will reach many, not despite her numbers but because of them.  There was no mistake made, only a miracle.  Receive the miracle and participate in the joy.”

I press the folded paper reduced to a 4 by 2 inch rectangle into his hand and walk away, praying it would expand to cover his heart and hers.  I do not look back I no longer need the paper, the truth is etched within me.©

You can not carry your child’s cross

crossYou can not carry your child’s cross.  Luke 9:23 states,  Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.  We can not pick up their cross but are called to pick up our own personal cross daily.

We can not pick up our children’s crosses it does not work that way.  God created their cross for them.  Their unique attributes and obstacles; some to endure, some to overcome and some to count as pure joy.  All of these obstacles and attributes are blended together to create the masterpiece that is them.  We can not interrupt the process of them “becoming” to reduce our own pain.  I too anguish over my children’s struggles they seem unnecessary, messy, painful and without purpose.  I say to myself, “Surely the Lord would want me to fix this”, when the answer is, “no this is for them to endure” I languish in my pain and allow joy to be stolen from me.

Someone once told me about the process of a butterflies birth and I believe it applies here.  A butterfly once it is cocooned must then bite its way through the cocoon and slowly squeeze itself out millimeter my millimeter as it’s wings slowly unfold they dry.  Someone seeing that pain and slow progress pulled the butterfly out quickly, “saving it”.  This butterfly never did fully develop it’s wings and could not fly.  Because you see in that slow painful process the wings were fully developing.  We can not “ease” the process it is not possible.

Lord help me to stop trying to “ease” the process.  Let me to live in the moment and to feel the joy that you are granting me.  Strengthen me through your joy.  I love you Lord and I trust you with my children.  Take them Lord for you know the plans you have for them.  Grant me the strength to get out of your way.  Help me Lord instead to pick up my own cross.  Do not let me un-shoulder my privilege and my right to bear my own cross.  I need You in my life.  I surrender my motherhood to you.  I love you Lord, Amen.