Friday, August 19, 2011

"If You Are Willing"

I'm in the midst of a Beth Moore study on Jesus... The One and Only.  On week 3: Day 4 the title said, "If you are willing." The scripture was Luke 5:12-16. I had to share this story again.

September 2000...
We rode in silence for the twenty to thirty minute trip home.  Stunned to say the least.  How do we go from here?  It was one of those surreal moments that will be etched in my memory forever.  Time seemed to stop.  We knew from that moment on we would never be the same.  We just left the geneticists office where we received the diagnosis for our firstborn... Chromosome 18q-mosaic.  We just left the office to stares from the "professionals" as we decided, to their surprise, to keep our baby.  I heard about stories like this, but now it was my story.  They didn't know much about 18q-, yet still recommended we terminate the pregnancy.  We declined just as we always knew we would when we thought about abortion growing up, yet we walked out of the office in shock...

I sat quietly next to Andy and held my growing tummy as I wondered at the little girl who grew inside of me.  We wanted to pray but couldn't find the words.  Should we ask God for healing?  Is it right to ask Him for something different than what he already gave?  Should we thank Him?  I don't feel very grateful right now.  I don't feel the "God gives special kids to special people."  I want to hold that perfect, healthy baby.  I've always thought... I can't even think straight... I should pray... I can't... I need answers

I sat numb trying to piece together what I should feel or what I should do.  I sat in silent prayer because the words just wouldn't come.  What do we do?  I opened my Bible randomly to Luke 5.  The leper came to Jesus and said, "If you are willing, will you heal me?"  That was our answer.  We would humbly ask for healing because that was the desire of our hearts.  We wanted a miracle.  We acknowledge His ability to provide it, yet we would submit to whatever He deemed best for us.  The pain of asking for something knowing his answer might not be what I want, yet finding it possible to trust anyway.  I would say the words if asked, but my heart couldn't understand "no".  He said "no".  He said no to healing, to the miracle we sought; yet yes to being glorified in her imperfection.  He chose to perfect us with her instead of perfecting her.  I do get it more now than I did back then, but I wonder at why she must endure so much...

I had a hard time for some time when I heard a story of miraculous healing because it always brought doubts of why he didn't heal my Abby.  Why does He heal some and not others?  Did we do something? Sin?
John 9:1-3 refutes the idea that all illnesses are the result of sin, but that God may be glorified in the struggle.  "The only absolute connection between sin and physical infirmities is that we live in a fallen world" (Beth Moore).  Hebrews 4:14 Reminds us to come boldly before the throne with our petitions.

Our life is often a struggle, but glorify God?... Abby does.  She can often touch people in ways I never could.  I have to submit my will to his in order to bring Him glory, yet Abby glorifies him with her very existence.  She doesn't have all the crud that I carry which gets in the way.  I realize that she may be disabled in body, but I'm afflicted in mind and spirit.  Apart from God, given the right circumstances and the wrong state of mind, we're all capable of anything, and if we could keep it all together without help we'd be so prideful it would be unbearable!  Without Jesus we're hopeless...

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