I have been conversing with a new friend, a gal who with her husband has adopted a special needs two year old. I was trying to offer her perspective from someone a little further down the road and just let her know she isn’t alone. She wrote about her daughter’s physical issues and the need for intense therapy and then she said:
“All of this physical therapy has had me thinking about what God is doing in my heart through this adoption. When we do therapy with K, she cries a lot. She hates it. She hates being put into positions that she isn’t used to being in. She hates stretching muscles that she isn’t accustomed to using. It is uncomfortable and unnatural and I’m sure it hurts some times too. Sometimes it is scary for her because she is learning to keep her balance for the first time and she thinks we are going to let her fall. She doesn’t understand why we are doing what we are doing.
We are sorry to cause her pain and discomfort and fear, but if we don’t, she is at risk of losing the use of some of her muscles forever. And she certainly wouldn’t reach her full potential. To let her remain in the positions she is most comfortable in, to let her keep doing what she has always done, would be harmful to her growth. In the future it would hurt her more than the hurt she is experiencing in the right now of our sessions. We would be pretty lousy parents if we let her take the easy road, wouldn’t we? She doesn’t understand what is at stake, but we do.
Do you see what I’m getting at? This adoption is stretching new muscles in my heart. It is forcing me to exercise what I would let atrophy and die if I were left to my old comfortable habits. I would rather stop growing and remain right where I am. I would rather not experience any of the stretching. I would rather opt out of the scary, I’m going to fall feelings that come with leaning on God to keep my balance. I fuss and cry about it just like K does. I don’t understand what is at stake and I can’t see the point of experiencing the pain. But God is a good father and He insists that I do the work that it will take to stretch beyond my old comfortable habits of selfishness and self pity and fear. He knows that the hurts of my past are still affecting my ability to love others and He is going to make sure that I am healed from them. Even if He has to very lovingly hurt me a little bit right now.
Some days when I get up in the morning, I ask myself, “Are you going to cooperate with the therapy today, or are you going to fight it?” It’s just a question, not a mantra that magically makes the day easier. It’s just a way of reminding myself of Who it is exactly that I’m struggling against. And yes, I do still struggle. There are days when it is easier than others. Like today. There are days that are just awful.”
Wasn’t that profound? I love that she can see how individually and pointedly the Lord is working in her life through the circumstance/trial/gift that He has placed in her life.
I could relate so much with what she said. I don’t think I had ever made a correlation between what Levi struggles with and what I struggle with.
Actually! Now that I think of it, my very sweet friend ML said something to me one time about Levi needing to learn to trust and my struggle to trust God at times. Of course, that is just one of Levi’s issues, but it is a biggie!
So, I really want to evaluate my heart. I am praying and asking God to open my eyes to what He is working on in me and then help me to be able to let it go – turn away from the sinful part of it – and turn towards what He wants of me. Right now I am in the pitching a fit and feeling sorry for myself stage, so I am praying that goes away quickly! 🙂