Since I have been a parent to a child with special needs people have told me that I was hand-picked. I was “chosen” by God to parent because I am strong, because I am able to handle all that my kids need and somehow implying that they’d be unable to do it because I’m the only person that could do it this well.
When one friend said this to me, I barked back, “Wait! You could do this, you are one of the most organized and strongest people I know!” She told me that I was right, that she had all the skills to do it, but she said she couldn’t do it with as much grace.
When I’m feeling impatient with my son for his behaviors, or my daughter for her (validated) fears I don’t feel I have much grace. But other days I rely on my relationship with God to get me through with grace. I have a great deal of faith that has seen me through some pretty dark times. From times that included seeing my kids through some health scares as well as a recent bout of mental illness with one, to relying on faith to know that my marriage would be there on the other side after the chips fall.
For me, I’ve not had faith without work. My faith hasn’t always been strong and it’s during those times that I rely on my friends to have enough faith for me and so that is how I maintain my connection to God when I am working out my God relationship problems out. Because that is there too.
I’m open enough to know that there are many ways people make their way with their faith and so the theme for the week, which we’ve been calling God Week, was born. That isn’t to say that God is the only path to faith, either. It was born out of the interest of how other faiths see God and disabilities. Of how different faiths and theology explain the “God wouldn’t give you more than you can handle” belief that caregivers in the special needs arena so often hear.
Finding people who could provide essays from different faiths was harder than we expected but we think we have some unique experiences and beliefs to share. As we post essays this week, we’d love your input, so please comment here, or join in the discussions at our non-denominational group Faith & Disability or create a spirituality group focused on the religious path you are walking. It’s not as much about God Week as it is about Peace Week. Hoping that by bringing some other ideas to discussion means that we can all find our way to peace – whatever that means for us.
In honor of that, we’re giving away a little peace. Registered members can comment for a chance to win a little peace for themselves. Here’s a suncatcher for your corner of the world, a 4″ ice blue reminder of peace from Northern Sun.
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