I have to tell this story, because I’ve said for more than three years that I want God to use Andrew’s story to make His name known. So here goes:
I truly believe God allowed Andrew’s recent respiratory illness to happen, in part, to test me. As you know, a common cold virus can become a dangerous respiratory infection for Andrew. ANY cold. ANY time. And fast. That darn floppy airway of his just can’t handle respiratory sickness well – at all – and we’ve had two hospital stays in the last eight months to prove it.
For 3 ½ years I’ve let fear, worry, and anxiety literally define me. When your baby is born with special needs it is just really hard NOT to live that way. Just weeks ago, I sensed a wrestling in my spirit. I sensed God saying to me, “Tricia, I did not create you to live like this. You cannot keep living in fear and on edge all the time. It’s wearing you down. Please allow Me to enter into this.” (I thought I was already doing that, Lord?! But no. Not like I needed to.)
So, I wrestled, but I didn’t tell anyone. Then, as I sensed that MAYBE he might be getting sick, I made a public declaration on Facebook about what God had been teaching me, as many of you saw. (I needed some accountability.) And the next day? Boom. He was sick.
As always, I began to walk in fear, discouragement, and anxiety. And then hours later something flipped in me. I recalled what God has been speaking to me about in past weeks. I began audibly praying in expectancy and speaking truth CONSTANTLY. I’d say things like, “Jesus, by faith, I am telling you that we are NOT being admitted to Riley.” Or “Please, Jesus, heal my son!” Or “Lord, I know you’re going to heal him.” Over and over again. I almost became obsessed with speaking the truth audibly! A big difference than in the past? I was not just SAYING these things, as any faithful Christian woman should. 😉 I was BELIEVING it. For the first time in a very, VERY long time, I walked around with a “glass half full” attitude rather than the glass being half empty. My mind just shifted.
After we consulted with doctors and got medication, we began administering them, as well as increasing Andrew’s daily breathing treatments. Slowly, he started to improve. I just couldn’t believe it. I was almost tempted to be doubtful once more, but I caught myself speaking truth to Jesus again!
Less than 24 hours after taking him to his pediatrician, I started to weep at my desk at work. I mean, weep. I sensed God’s presence so heavily in my office that I had to shut my door for a few moments alone with Him. I realized that maybe this illness was meant more for me to put my trust in God in action. That my relationship with Him needed a major boost and God wanted to use one of my DEEPEST fears to engage with me. So, I wept. And I thanked God, intimately understanding that He had really spoken to me through my son’s illness.
When the next respiratory issue comes, I’ll go back to this one and recall just how God reminded me to trust Him – not with my lips, but in my being. I have been changed, deeply changed this week. And I’ll never forget it.