While we rejoice at where he is today, and where God has brought our family, at times I still feel like my heart is an open wound, bare and unsheltered, lying in the middle of a war zone, where at any moment, grenades and spears and bullets can attack with no mercy. Growing older and more aware of the ills of living in this fallen world, I see my children and Marcus in particular, and want to pack up our stuff to live in a cave, pretending that the world won't be able to touch us.
I hate that I'll read an article about how teenagers with disabilities have no real friends, see a Facebook status about how someone's autistic son now struggles with debilitating seizures, or I'll hear about older children with JS struggling so profoundly with emotional and behavioral challenges, or parents grieving the incredible loss of their child, and then look at Marcus and want to roll up in a ball and cry, fearing that those will be realities for him some day. I know it's wrong to assume he'll face these things, but more likely than not, there will be extreme valleys ahead for us in one form or another.
When I'm left alone to the statistics, I go a little nuts. But thanks be to the Holy Spirit to remind me of my Savior.
He was despised and rejected by men;
A man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief;
And as one from whom men hide their faces
He was despised, and we esteemed him not.
Surely he has borne our griefs
And carried our sorrows;
Yet we esteemed him stricken,
Smitten by God, and afflicted.
I love that Jesus was a man of sorrows. Perfect in every way, but not haughty, because He was despised and broken. He carried the vileness of this world on Himself and we, for whom He suffered, hated Him. When God crushed Him on the cross on my behalf, He carried in his heart all the issues I fear in life. He understood loneliness, being an outcast, debilitating physical pain, emotional turmoil, death.
I love that when God says in His Word that all the pain in this life is "light" and "momentary" (2 Cor 4:17), He's not saying that with the air of "Okay, so just suck it up, folks." He's telling us that because although in light of eternity, the pain is short, He also understands that our affliction is deeply painful at times.
I'm gonna go out on a limb here, but I don't know if I could love Jesus if He never knew pain. It would be extremely difficult to put my trust and hope in a Savior who did not understand my heart. But thankfully, my Lord not only understands, but has experienced it Himself. He died with all the world's pain on His shoulders and suffered the full wrath of God so that I wouldn't have to. And for that, I love Him. I love my Savior who walks me through this momentary life and guides me across the minefields ahead, having already experienced the worst of it Himself.
I love that He gave me and Mike a son who is a living reminder of all that He is for us.