Photo by Gabrielle Allman
Can you be grateful for everything that has happened in your life-not just for the good things but for all that has brought you to this day? Remember, it was the suffering of God’s Son that brought forth a family of people known as Christians. My own suffering is what God used to bring me to where I am today.
Right in the middle of the tears, the dance of joy can be felt. Seen from below, from a human perspective, there is an enormous distinction between good times and bad, between sorrow and joy. but from above, in the eyes of God, sorrow and joy are never separated. Where there is pain, there is also healing. Henri Nouwen
I found an old photo album that I had made my husband for his 4oth birthday. I had asked people to write him notes or letters of how he affected their life. I peppered the letters with pictures of the writers and our family. Looking upon it made me smile and I was so grateful that I had the thoughtfulness of mind to do that when I did, for our mothers are no longer here with us. Their letters are especially special!
But looking at the album also brought a deep sense of gravity to all of the trials and tribulations we have been through. There have been so many, down- right, ongoing, hard times, with little release. I haven’t always handle them with grace. I have had an emotional break down and I have tried escaping. I understand what Nouwen is saying about our perceived distinction between good times and bad times. And I can also bear witness to what was the apparent worst time of my life, bringing the exact change and healing that I needed.
We are all on this journey together. We can help each other become more grateful for life even with pain. God is hidden in the pain and suffering of the world, and we get to reach out in compassion and show our love to others…that is the point<3
We are blessed to be able to attend the National (and there are inter-national attendees here as well) Autism Conference at Penn State University this week! I thought I would blog nightly and reflect on the things from each day.
So now, I will back up and start at the beginning of this story :-)We never know how things are going to play out with our son in any given situation. We have been prepping him all summer about this trip, but we cannot be sure how he is interpreting any thing. He is typically not happy about any plans we make that he hasn’t made, and he always complains, so we are used to that! We have to sell him on any thing we do except anything having to do with eating or playing video games of course!!
About 30 minutes into our trip a few incidents happened that made my husband pull the car over in a fury and make me want to say; “take me back home, I don’t want to go with either of you!” Sometimes it is one thing after another with our son. Things that make sense to him I guess, but drive us absolutely bonkers and add an incredible amount of stress to our marriage. During this frustrating scenario that was going on, my husband bit his own tongue by accident, enough to make it bleed!! It was just all so awful! I was angry and frustrated, they were each angry and frustrated, and then my heart went out to my husband because things like this happen so frequently. There was just nothing to say that was going to be helpful, I could only sit in the salty silence of acceptance. My flesh wanted to go home but I got out my guitar instead and started singing my songs.
We got through unexpected traffic and dinner ,which continued the “ordeal”, and made it to our room. The pool at the hotel is very nice and relaxation came, when we all got in the whirl pool. Peace…
When our son hit the bed, with all of it’s hotel comfyness and pillows, it didn’t take him long to go out! He looks so peaceful when he sleeps, all of that frustration he deals with in a day fades away and it is well with my soul.