Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Defining moment.

I had one of the biggest, most critical defining moments of my life yesterday.

This actually wasn't something new.  I have heard this before.  But this time...a light bulb went on and everything was different.

I was straightening my hair and I turned music on.  It was loud and I was loving each song.

Then...a song came on that I haven't heard in a very...very long time.

But this time...something was different.  It hit me like it was God speaking directly to me.

"You Can Have Me" by Sidewalk Prophets.  

If I saw You on the street
And You said come and follow me
But I had to give up everything
All I once held dear and all of my dreams

Would I love You enough to let go
Or would my love run dry
When You asked for my life

When did love become unmoving?
When did love become unconsuming?
Forgetting what the world has told me
Father of love, You can have me
You can have me


I paused it right here. I put the straightener down.  And I was completely stunned.

So...I've been very transparent about my journey with Taizi.  It's hard. I find it extremely hard.  The emotional side of the daily surrender required...feels overwhelming.  I haven't asked God "why?" but I've asked Him everything else.
 "How...?"
 "Who...?"
 "How long...?"
 "Really....?"

You know how you have said what you personally could and could not handle...? And you bless those that can handle what you can't...?  Well that's been me, my whole life...with mentally disabled children.  Love them.  They are precious. They need love and care and a lifetime of a special heart...but that's just not me.  I'm not that person.

And then God called us to Taizi. In the most crystal clear way...He called us...to him.  We knew. Beyond the shadow of a doubt.

And at first it was so unknown.  He was so unknown. His physical disabilities were so unknown.

But now...we are 2 years in and there's a lot more 'known'.

I don't know what I thought...but I never ever thought this would be our life.

Fully deaf yet so mentally disabled that teaching sign is not possible.  No communication.

Drooling. Burping.  Hitting himself.  Chewing his tongue.  Biting his tongue.  Bruises all over his ribs from jabbing himself in his ribs with his thumbs all day long.

Then, in our small house, finally finding a small break in the afternoon where we could put him in his playpen with his toys.  It's all he did downstairs in the living room so this was perfect. Just a few hours without the burping, hysterically giggling, humming noises, hitting himself, watching him rock back and forth for hours... this was just the perfect plan.  Until I went to get him and found him naked...his every piece of clothing off...his diaper off and ... yes.  Everything saturated.  And this was his new pattern.  So there was no more break.

And that was hard.  Really...really...hard.

Perhaps for you...it wouldn't be.  But I promise you...the day in and day out...drain of this is hard.

No progress.  No return of affection.  No attachment.

Just work.

Emotionally, physically...draining.  Work.

This is our life...?

Many of you have asked (well-meaning) what life will be like with Taizi in five years. In ten years.  In fifteen years.  And the very thought of that would tighten my chest and I could feel the panic.  I don't know.  Our mission has been one day at a time.

Dean and I would often talk and he would consistently said "Janice...this wasn't about Taizi.  I don't believe it ever was.  It was about you and I."

That never sat well.

Couldn't I learn these hard lessons another way...? I've learned faith in the hardest times. I've learned surrender when I couldn't see around the corner. But no end in sight...? Each day harder than the day before...?

This is really about me?  What...?

I believed it in my head. But that's as far as it went.

This was 'too far'.

'Too much'.

Going through the motions and feeling like I was dying a little bit more each day.

And then the song.


If I saw You on the street
And You said come and follow me
But I had to give up everything
All I once held dear and all of my dreams

Would I love You enough to let go
Or would my love run dry
When You asked for my life

When did love become unmoving?
When did love become unconsuming?
Forgetting what the world has told me
Father of love, You can have me
You can have me

Oh Janice.  Oh...Janice.  If He said I had to give up everything.  Everything I once held dear...and all of my dreams.

Would I love Him enough to let go?
Or...would my love run dry...when He asked for my life...?

Oh...this was the biggest, clearest, brightest light bulb...defining moment. Ever.

Do I love Him (Jesus) enough to let go...? Or is this too much...? Has my love for Him run dry...?

Oh...Janice.

When did my love become unmoving...?

When did my love become unconsuming...?

That's it.  This IS consuming.  This IS taking all of me.  This IS the biggest stretch in my life.  This IS that far.  It IS that much.

But I love Jesus that much.  Yes. Yes I'll give up everything.

If You’re all You claim to be
Then I’m not losing anything
So I will crawl upon my knees
Just to know the joy of suffering

I will love You enough to let go
Lord, I give you my life
I give you my life

When did love become unmoving?
When did love become unconsuming?
Forgetting what the world has told me
Father of love, You can have me
You can have me

I want to be where You are
I’m running into Your arms
And I will never look back
So Jesus, here is my heart

When did love become unmoving?
When did love become unconsuming?
Forgetting what the world has told me
Father of love, You can have me
You can have me

I'm not losing anything.  It has felt like it for two years.  That I'm giving everything.  But no...no...if Jesus is really who He claims to be...then I'm not losing anything.  I will love Him enough to let go.  

And it hit me.  This has all been about surrender.  For two years I've blogged that this journey was all about surrender.  And it was. But it was all about bringing me right here.  To this point.  To realizing...my love had become unmoving and definitely unconsuming.  

I came downstairs and everything was different.  I hugged Taizi differently. I fed him differently.  Now I'm all in.  Because it's not a negative that this feels 'hard'  'the ultimate sacrifice' and 'totally consuming'....no...it is that big. But now...now I'm willing to go that far.  

Click to listen to the song here:



5 comments:

  1. So glad the Lord is ministering to your weary and beautiful heart! I am praying for you and your family and I wish you all the peace, love and joy your hearts can hold this Christmas and always!

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  2. Janice, you are an amazing God fearing woman and I count it a blessing to know you!!

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  3. Thanks Janice for sharing! Praying for you. Hugs

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  4. Always happy to hear from you… I will be praying that peace will accompany the renewing of your heart and mind. He's got you in His palm, and little Taizi, too… His faithfulness and love never runs out, never gives up on you. Hang in there.

    Sending love, hugs, and much sincerity from Memphis, TN.

    Merry Christmas!!

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  5. Sending a big hug... don`t know what to say... just sending hugs. You are a very special person.
    xox

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