Which is worse: dealing with unpredictable behaviors, or facing certain devastation? As bad as things seem, they could always be worse.
My heart goes out to moms who have kids with serious mental illness (MI). It’s not possible for me to reach out and hug each of you, so I share Bible verses of comfort.
This devotional is offered as a different form of comfort. I decided to relate a story about a mother who is facing a much greater trial than mine. Her struggles put mine into perspective. Maybe you’ll have a similar response. Or, you might read her story and realize that you’re living a worse nightmare. In that case, this story might take your mind of your situation momentarily. Regardless of your situation, I’m sure you can stand a dose of inspiration…to read about how another mom is able to find joy in the Lord. Even though she faces impending grief.
After church, I ran into a parent of two former students. Her older son, Andrew, recently graduated from high school. I knew he’d been suffering symptoms of a rare progressive neurological disease. Kim gave me an update.
“Andrew’s been diagnosed with a rare disease which is similar to childhood Alzheimer’s. David has also been diagnosed with it.”
That sentence hit me like a bullet.
Please Lord, no! This can’t be happening. Not to a family who loves You so much. Not to Andrew who has such a sweet personality. Not to David who’s only in ninth grade. How will David cope as he watches his future unfold—seeing the disease takes its toll on Andrew first.”
I stood there in shock, choking back tears. Speechless. Unable to move.
My mind swirled with questions.
How can a parent deal with the knowledge that her two sons will die young? It must feel like being strapped to a chair, watching a tsunami approach in slow motion. With nothing to do but think about the impending destruction. Dreams demolished. Emotions obliterated. Unbearable heartache.
Moses faced an impossible situation. An army of chariots quickly closed in. Millions of Israelites complained in fear. The Red Sea blocked an escape.
By faith Moses said, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.” Exodus 14:13-14
Can Moses’ advice help us?
We fight MI. Others deal with the onslaught of an incurable disease, unfair accusations, or an unexpected betrayal. Many wage a battle within of doubt, uncertainty, loneliness, mental exhaustion, or discouragement.
Regardless of our circumstances, we can all find comfort in knowing the Lord will fight for us. Our challenge: to be still before God. And wait in confidence for His deliverance.
By the way, on that day when Kim provided the update, she asked me, “Would you be willing to tell what Andrew was like in second grade? We’re making a documentary for our website. We want to educate people about the disease.”
I agreed. The Lord helped me speak without crying. You can see that documentary on The Andrew Coppola Foundation website.
Are you able to get still before the Lord? How/where/when do you do that?
Maybe Hillsong’s ‘Still’ will help you draw near to Him in stillness: