It never ceases to amaze me the way God works, the way He teaches us about ourselves, and about Who HE is, and His plan for our lives. About 10 years ago, my son was diagnosed with Autism. I cried, I was angry, I didn’t understand, but I never stopped loving my precious little boy. I dug in my heels, and prepared for any fight that would come my way, and there have been many….fights with Dr’s. fights with the school, fights with family members, battles fought on a deep emotional level with people who could not see past the word Autism, who refused to get to know my child simply because they didn’t understand Autism, didn’t want to deal with Autism.
There have been many times over the past 10 years that I have cried out to God “WHY??” He has sent people across my path who have helped me along the journey. I am blessed to have a husband who stands beside me, and at times, in front of me as we fight for what is best for our son. He has blessed me with two daughters who love their brother unconditionally, who see things in him that even I can’t always see.
I have learned that Autism is not something I need to fight, it’s not something I can, or need to fix. My son is NOT Broken, He is simply wired differently. God Made Him Special, and he loves him VERY Much. this brings me to my current lesson. The past year has been a hard one, not just because of the trials of raising a pre-teen boy who happens to be autistic. 8 months ago, a tragic event occurred that forever changed my life, impacted my walk with the Lord in ways I for whatever reason, couldn’t see before that point. (see my post “life , death and the Power of Prayer” for the full story).
Last month, the Pastor of my church challenged us to ask someone close to us what our gifts were, and if we were using them, or keeping them hidden. Unsure who to ask, I asked on Facebook, since most of the people who know me best live miles away. My sister responded that I have a gift of intercession. I shared this yesterday with my Sunday school class, and the teacher said ” to stand in the gap”. We have been studying the book of Acts, but also in the course of discussion, talking about “spiritual boot camp” and it was pointed out yesterday to me that raising three kids, one who happens to have Autism, and all the trials that come from raising a special needs child is my boot camp. That because I have a child with Autism, I am a more compassionate person, and that it enhances my prayer life as a result. I had never even thought about things from this perspective before. Sure, I had accepted that my son is a gift, and that loving Him unconditionally has made me stronger, but this was a new direction. I couldn’t get what had been stated in Sunday school off my mind, I thought on it, prayed about it, wondered why I had not seen it before.
When i logged into facebook this morning, I was greeted with a blog post from another “blogging mom” friend of mine and something jumped out at me, something fit like a piece to the puzzle of my life. It was like a confirmation for me. This is what she said “
“Autism teaches compassion.
Autism teaches acceptance.
Autism teaches patience.
I am a work in progress and the gift of autism that God gave me is shaping me, molding me everyday.” ( see her full post here: Autism: a Blessing )
Thank you Lord for bringing people into my life who can see past the day to day, who can help me see beyond the trials and struggles to open my eyes to the blessing you have given me in my son.
I leave you today with a song that sums this up perfectly for me:
We pray for peace
Comfort for family, protection while we sleep
We pray for healing, for prosperity
All the while, You hear each spoken need
Yet love is way too much to give us lesser things
‘Cause what if your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if the thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You’re near
What if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise
We pray for wisdom
Your voice to hear
We cry in anger when we cannot feel You near
We doubt your goodness, we doubt your love
As if every promise from Your Word is not enough
All the while, You hear each desperate plea
As long as we have faith to believe
When friends betray us
When darkness seems to win
We know the pain reminds this heart
That this is not, this is not our home
What if my greatest disappointments
Or the aching of this life
Is the revealing of a greater thirst this world can’t satisfy
What if trials of this life
The rain, the storms, the hardest nights
Are your mercies in disguise” ~Laura Story