We have a home in Florida: Ft. Myers to be specific. With all the news and anticipation of Hurricane Irma hitting (slamming) land, there is a swirl of emotions as I write this.
We have many friends, family, acquaintances, and neighbors that will be affected by this storm as it blasts through the whole state of Florida. The whole state—that’s hard to comprehend. One can’t properly or adequately prepare for something this catastrophic and life changing. We hold on to each other, to prayer to God, and to hope.
I’ve never lived through a hurricane, but hearing the diagnosis that our child will have special needs isn’t so different than preparing for the devastation of a storm. We have choices. We have decisions. We have things to do immediately, to change eventually, and to cling to with hope for what seems like a very long time into the future. Most times it more than a simple mind can handle. Can we handle this? Will we make it? Will we be alone? Will we quit? Sometimes we want to give up, quit, throw in the towel; but like any challenge or catastrophe we need to inventory what is going on and make the best decisions we can for that moment in time. Staying calm isn’t easy, but it is a choice and option.
If we can remain hopeful, in control of our emotions which might be swirling like a hurricane, and relying upon the direction God can give, we can enjoy a peace like what we know is in the eye of the storm of even the fiercest hurricane (which is considered the most violent storm on earth.)
We can do that by:
- Opening God’s word (the Bible) and start reading the Psalms and Proverbs; reading daily. You’ll be amazed at the encouragement and strength given in these 2 books
- Making and taking time to pray; asking the Lord Jesus for direction and calm
- Asking others for help when it’s needed
- Helping others when we can (it always feel good to help!)
- Waiting. Waiting. (So much of life is in the waiting.)
- Waiting for things to change
- Waiting for things to improve
- Waiting for direction of ones’ next step
- Add your own: _____________________
As we pray for those who’ll be affected by Irma’s winds and water and possible great loss, let’s also pray for those receiving news for the first time of the loss of dreams for their child. Let’s pray for each other in the long haul of caring for one with special needs 24/7 … for the duration.
Perhaps this portion of scripture will be meaningful to all of us:
“Those who go down to the sea in ships, who do business on great waters; they have seen the works of the Lord, and His wonders in the deep. For He spoke and raised up a stormy wind, which lifted up the waves of the sea. They rose up to the heavens, they went down to the depths; their soul melted away in their misery; they reeled and staggered like a drunken man, and were at their wits’ end. Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, and He brought them out of their distresses. He caused the storm to be still, so that the waves of the sea were hushed. Then they were glad because they were quiet; so He guided them to their desired haven. Let them give thanks to the Lord for His lovingkindness, and for His wonders to the sons of men!”