Grace for Special Needs Families: Day Six
grace for our kids
READ: Jeremiah 1:5. Jeremiah 29:11, Romans 2:11
I remember it so clearly. We were at the doctor's office and my oldest son, then 12 had just had the biggest meltdown I’d ever seen from him. There was screaming, kicking and punches being thrown at the 4 nurses trying to calm him down. His panic, a direct result of fear of needles. His two younger sisters were in the room with us and I remember the fear and worry in their tear brimmed eyes as they watched their big brother completely lose control of himself.
After he was calmed, he cowered in the corner crying, wondering what was wrong with him. He kept asking, “Why am I like this? What’s wrong with me? Everyone is going to look at me differently now. You are going to look at me differently.” I felt a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes as I reassured him over and over that wasn’t going to happen. He was still my son and I loved him in this moment more than ever.
If I’m honest, this was the first time I really felt his need beyond my own. We had struggled with behavioral issues his whole life. He had been asked to leave his first school after being there for six years. He had been to the principal’s office over and over, with no real clear insight into his behavior. And even when words such as autism & emotional-behavioral disability were thrown our way, the struggle felt more like my struggle than his.
But suddenly, seeing his tears and embarrassment as he questioned himself and his worth, it hit me. He needed to know he mattered. He needed to know I would always love him. He needed to know God was here to help him. And he needed to know that every single person struggles with something and he was not alone.
The verse I am always reminded of is the Lord’s word to Jeremiah - ”I chose you before I formed you in the womb; I set you apart before you were born. I appointed you a prophet to the nations.”- Jeremiah 1:5
Despite the particular circumstances that surround our special needs child, we have to know and understand that even in all our struggles and disappointments, God has a plan to use that precious life to bring joy, strength, and healing into the lives of those they have contact with. So often we pray for grace and strength and wisdom for ourselves as we make decisions for our child, but His Word isn’t just for us as we roam through uncharted waters, but it’s for our children as they live them.
God’s Word to Jeremiah in chapter 29 is for all of us. There is no favoritism with God (Romans 2:11). His Word to Jeremiah is also His Word to our children. “For I know the plans I have for you--this is the Lord’s declaration--plans for your future and a hope. (Jeremiah 29:11)
As Mamas, if we begin to see our child as a Child of God, anointed and with a future, we can then begin to speak life in the face of frustration. We can speak victory in the face of weakness. Our child may not know or may not be able to speak truth over themselves, so we have this incredible honor to take God’s Word and apply it to every area of their lives for them.
What are some specific areas your child struggles with? Physically, emotionally, mentally? Go to the Word on those areas. Speak God’s truth over their lives. If your child can understand and speak, show them what God says about them and teach them to speak His truth over their lives.
Ask the Lord to give you wisdom and patience in the hard moments. You may already know what those moments are going to be due to experience. Ask for specific insight on how to speak and love your child in those moments. And thank Him that His strength is made perfect if your weakness.