I felt like I had lost my son.
I sat in the home of a good friend when I received the text message telling me I was needed at home immediately. My son had gone off the deep end. For several weeks, he has dealt with severe abdominal pain for which we have no cure to this point. We have been in and out of ER’s and doctor’s offices with plans and prognostications, but no pain relief. Most days he sits on the floor in his room building with Lego’s to distract from the pain. If he lies down he hurts. If he eats or doesn’t he hurts. If does nothing or everything he hurts. I have argued with doctors. I have sat up overnight in the ER. I have held his hand and hugged his neck.
His face was wrinkled up in a mixture of pain, emotion, and tears. He yelled and screamed uncontrollably as the pain washed over him. The ability to filter was gone. Like a liver that is shutting down the toxicity rises. His emotions are raw, laid open because of the pain. His face withdrawn and the light in his eyes gone, he balled himself up as tight as possible. His body seemed so small, wracked by the pain.
Have I lost the boy who laughed and played? Have I lost the boy whom I could never fill with enough food? Have I lost the one who was sweet, tender, kind, and strong? Have I lost the blue-eyed, blonde, light-up-a-room kid?
As I write this, I am reminded of Psalm 46.
1 God is our refuge and strength,a helper who is always found in times of trouble.
2 Therefore we will not be afraid,though the earth trembles
and the mountains topple into the depths of the seas,
3 though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with its turmoil.
God is our refuge. In Him we can place our trust. In Him we can find safety and security. I remember being chased as a child by some older boys. I raced back on my bike as fast as I could. Skidding into the front yard I was ecstatic to see Dad standing out there. I dropped the bike and ran over behind him. I sat down in his shadow and peeked around. The other boys had stopped short of the yard. Seeing my Dad, they decided it was not worth it. I had found my refuge. I can find refuge today in my Heavenly Father and so can you. Whatever you are dealing with today, God can be your refuge.
God is our strength. God bears our burdens. He is strong when I am weak. He is bold when I am fearful. He is positive when I am hopeless. As I prepared to build a small deck behind the house, I researched what to do. I found out that the ground work and foundation blocks were as critical as the deck planks themselves. The blocks and beams were what held up the deck that everyone saw. God is like those blocks and beams. He bears the weight often in ways no one sees. He is our blocks and beams so that our lives can shine with beauty and stability.
In true Psalmist fashion, I began with a pitiful position and will end in a praise posture. Though our lives seem dark now I look to God’s creation and see that it is always darkest before the dawn. God is able to do that which I cannot understand. I run to Him as my refuge and strength. Hope comes from those who trust in God!
My hope is in you Lord. My strength is in you Lord. Praise God!
Be still and know that I am God. Psalm 46:10