My parents are good at struggling sightly, I should know this by now. I remember five years ago when Dad rang me, to say that in a week’s time, Mum was going into full time care and the plan was for it to be permanent. They dealt with that emotional rollercoaster, Mum was only 49 at the time. Thankfully Mum was able to come home after a year as they got some much needed equipment and support. But since then there has been many more struggles that they have faced. Generally, with each struggle comes a progression in symptoms. It is what appears to be Mum and Dad’s next challenge makes my heart ache on a whole new level.
Over the past few weeks Mum has started having double vision and struggling with her speech. You may think, if I lost my speech I would just type or write what I want to say. But if you were Mum, you have lost the ability to do that. So imagine you can no longer walk or stand, you no longer have coordination in your hands, you can no longer feed yourself, picking up objects or a cup to drink from is a challenge in itself. You rely on someone to help you get in and out of bed, you need help to bathe, you do not have much independence at all, and now you struggle to speak. For us abled-bodied people it is a hard thing to comprehend or understand the feelings of grief and heartache that the individual with the struggle is going through.
(Picture: My Mum and I)
Some people look at the world and think, if there is a God why would He let bad things happen; why does God let bad things happen to good people? Why does God not heal one of his followers who is desperate for healing and would only want to glorify Him if they were healed? Now, when some people look at my situation, they think I am holding onto false hope. To be honest when things get overwhelming, I sometimes think the same thing. But that is when I am reminded of what I believe and that God has a bigger plan for this.
Over the past year and a half, I have learnt that pain is powerful and that society says we can have it all but really we can’t. If Christians did not have to worry about struggles or trials or illness, then how would they relate to other people? If we did not have to go through trials how would we learn things, how would we become stronger people? I have recently learnt that there are three different scenarios when Christians face trials. We can be delivered from, delivered through or delivered by the trial.
To be delivered from a trial may look like medical test result coming back negative or it may look like we are about to face a trial, a difficult financial situation, but miraculously something happens and everything is all good again. By being delivered from a trial, our faith is built.
To be delivered through a trail is like when I battled anxiety. I went through the emotions and symptoms of anxiety for months but step by step I was able to overcome it. I learnt about trusting God, that He goes before me and will work things out for my good. I learnt to be in control of my emotions, thoughts, words, decisions and actions; and to be conscious of my weaknesses. I was made stronger, dealt with things that held me back and come out the other side. By being delivered from this trial my faith was refined and now I can use this to relate to and help other people.
To be delivered by the trial means that you die from the trial, the disease or accident but you are delivered into heaven to be with God. By being delivered through this trail, your faith is perfected.
God works in all three of these ways. Just because someone has not been healed does not mean that they have sin they need to deal with or whatever before they can be healed. It takes greater faith to stand firm in the midst of a trial then it does when life is ‘working out’
I read this amazing book called Through the Eyes of a Lion by Levi Lusko and I would like to share a few powerful things I learnt from it.
It seems like the darkness is starting to settle over my family once again but this is when we start glowing in the dark.
The other day I asked my Mum what her favourite song was, her reply was Even If by Kutless (see below video, have a listen). This song speaks a lot about the kind of faith that my Mum has. She has not just been suffering for the past few years, it has been a long slow decline over the past 20 plus years. But her faith and belief in God is stronger and will withstand the trial no matter what way God chooses to deliver her!
These three songs speak straight to how I am felling right now. If you have not listen to them, then give them a listen. They speak so much truth. No matter what your going through, there is hope in Jesus!