There is a touching scene in the movie, “Amazing Grace,” where William Wilberforce confides in his friend that he can’t sing anymore. Once he lost hope and was filled with discouragement after many failures, he “loses” his singing voice. Later, in the movie, once he finds love and his sense of purpose renewed again, he begins to sing again.
Recently, my 2-year-old daughter became very sick. She literally began to waste away. She stopped growing. Stopped gaining weight. Stopped playing.
She stopped singing.
It is one of the hardest things to watch. Your child. So small. Helpless. Ill. Sad.
And not knowing why.
We were blessed to travel back to the States so that our little angel could get specialized medical treatment. It was definitely a season of an emotional roller coaster. Our happy family was separated by an ocean. Our little one was put through needles after needles. Dealing with health insurance issues. And the list continued.
Through the support of our families, friends, loved ones, and medical staff from all over, including Zambia, Kenya, United Kingdom, and the United States – we truly never felt God leave our side.
My little girl was diagnosed with celiac disease. What a relief to know what was causing my little one to be so ill! Thankfully, the only treatment is a gluten-free diet.
While it has been a tough adjustment (mostly for me), my little grace-filled angel is thriving! She has gained weight. She is energetic and playful.
And she has her singing voice back.
We learned a lot of lessons during this time. Here are just a few I would like to share:
- God is with us.
As you live for God and serve Him fully, it does not mean that challenges will not come. But, it does mean that when the challenges do come, He promises to never leave us.
“I will be a Father to you, and you shall be My sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.” 2 Corinthians 6:18
2. God created our little girl “unique.”
She was born with celiac disease, although we recently discovered it. She will always live with it. But, I promise, I will never teach her to be a victim or sorry for herself because she is “different” from everyone else. She is “unique.” She doesn’t have to be like everyone else. After all, isn’t that what Christianity is about?
She can and will live an amazing life. Nothing can hold her resilient, spirited self down. Actually, this will help her to be even more accomplished in her life.
And on another note, won’t she learn boundaries – that not everything that is available she can have? I think this can be applied spiritually. That our call in life is to be pure. Holy. Not having everything in our bodies. It’s a healthy lesson in life, both spiritually and physically.
“Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” 2 Corinthians 7:1
3. God’s grace is amazing.
There is no other way to put it. I have felt it. I have lived it. And what is even more amazing is that I see it in my little one. I see His Grace fully alive inside of her!
I expected to hide foods she can’t have. Or for her to have tears for wanting something she can’t eat. Instead, I have witnessed a child happy to choose a “special alternative for a special girl.” She even now asks me if it is “gluten free” – but she says it in a very funny way and it sounds like “goofy free”!
What a lesson truly to learn from children. To see His Grace. Working. Living. Breathing inside of her. It truly renews my love for Christ and His love for me and us.
“The Lord God is a sun and shield; The Lord will give grace and glory; No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.” Psalm 84:11
I can’t thank enough those who supported Fr. Abraham and me through this tough time.
Please pray for us as we adjust to a gluten-free life in Africa, which has its own set of challenges.
“For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is our victory that has overcome the world – our faith.” 1 John 5:4
Let’s Chat: Any lessons you have learned from a circumstance that has been turned into victory?