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Monday, October 3, 2011

Veggie Tales Theology

Wednesday was a rough homework day. I'm not sure why homework time often brings me to tears, but it does. I probably cry more about my kid's homework than anything else. Maybe it's because I am brought face to face with the challenges my kids with special needs have. Maybe it's because I'm faced with my own inadequacy to help them overcome them. It's probably both.

I was working with Mila on her homework for kindergarten. This is a new thing for both of us and Mila, as in all things, presents challenges when it comes to accomplishing the task. The brain hemorrhage she experienced at birth has caused significant cognitive impairment. Her recent EEG shows that she has episodes of slow brain function. While we honestly feel like there is more going on in that little brain of hers than she, at times, would have us privy to, her inability to focus prevents us from knowing what's really going on in there. Mila sat, flapping her hands and wringing her fingers, eyes darting in every which way as I repeatedly asked her to tell me something that started with an S. Mila has all her letters and their sounds down pat, yet in the 5 mins I patiently sat and asked her again and again, she said nothing. We moved on. I pointed to the drawing of a sock and asked her what it was and what letter it started with. Still nothing. I know she knows this!! As I sat and watched her, flapping, wiggling, head bobbing around, the image of a group of middle aged people from an adult day care center that frequent our local mall came to my mind. That's not exactly what I had in mind when we brought her home. While her progress since joining our family has been remarkable, I was hoping more for the miraculous. Her life itself is a miracle. Couldn't I...shouldn't I expect God to perform more of them? It's not like there is a limit... "Gee, I'm sorry, fresh out of miracles!". So why was I sitting there beating my head against a wall? Why, despite my redirecting, begging and pleading, was she on another planet. She's as dumb as a door nail (I'm just being honest, that is literally the thought that ran through my mind). God, what am I doing? Better yet, what are you doing? Why isn't she doing better than this? I don't know what to do with her!! The tears began to fall as I imagined her as a grown woman on her weekly field trip to the mall's food court. And then I heard God calling to me from the living room. Ok, so it wasn't ACTUALLY His voice, it was the DVD player, but it might as well have been. Veggie Tales was on, again.

Don't cry, Daniel
Fear not, Daniel
Don't you know you're not alone
There is One who is watching you
He hears you when you pray
And though it seems like there is no way out
God has made a way

God you are so faithful to speak to me, even if it is through a bunch of vegetables.

I don't know what "a way" means exactly. I don't know when "a way" will become apparent. But it will. I was reminded of this again in worship that night as we sang Healer.

You hold my very moment
You calm my raging seas
You walk with me through fire
And heal all my disease
I trust in You, I trust in You

I believe You're my healer
I believe You are all I need
I believe

And I believe You're my portion
I believe You're more than enough for me
Jesus You're all I need

Nothing is impossible for You
Nothing is impossible
Nothing is impossible for You
You hold my world in Your hands

So true. While I know all these things in my head, sometimes it's honestly hard to believe it in my heart. I know that God is fully capable of restoring Mila's brain, but will He? Why wouldn't He? Wouldn't that be the best thing for her? Or am I being selfish, wanting what is best for me, so I don't feel like a failure? Ah, there's the kicker. Maybe this is about my pride, I struggle with it so often. But God if this is about my pride, don't make her suffer to make me humble. Isn't there a better way to teach me this? Hmmm... Sounds like I'm about to start bargaining with Him. But I know better.

In every trial I've faced in life I've taken the perspective that God wants me to learn something from them. But as I sit on the floor of the office, huddled next to the homework table, I'm tired of learning. Of course if I was done learning, if God was finished with me then what would be the point of my life? And besides God is more concerned with my character than my comfort. I know that He doesn't always answer the way I want Him to and I've been through enough to know that He is God and I am not. I trust that He knows what's best for me, I may not always like it, but I trust him. He has never failed me.

So, as I learn to reconcile my faith to His will I'll continue to let the wisdom of Bob and Larry resonate in my soul and proclaim that nothing is impossible while I earnestly pray for a complete and miraculous healing of my daughter.


  1. Launa,
    this very eloquently sums up the challenge of loving and raising a child with special needs. My focus with Cami right now is loving her, I have spent too many years trying to "fix" her. We really need a play date!!!
    Erin Heasley

  2. Thanks Erin! Yes, play date for sure. Send me a fb message and let me know what days and times work for you.

  3. Beautiful and rawly expressed, Launa. So honest, but yet so hopeful. Thank you for conveying all those things.

    I want to cry during homework sometimes too. I *do* think it's so much more about us and our expectations and issues then theirs.

    Lord, help us!