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About a month ago a sermon my pastor preached really made me think. It was about God’s will and knowing you are in God’s will. So I thought about it:
Am I in God’s will?
And the answer I came up with was definitely, yes. There was no doubt in my mind. I was in God’s will when I married my husband four and half years ago. I was in God’s will in becoming a military wife, and I know this because I prayed about these things constantly and made sure to seek Him and other family and friends before making these decisions. I believe I am in God’s will right now, doing what we are doing – the every day in’s and out’s of being a stay-at-home mom to a special needs little boy.
So if that’s true and if I really believe that – which I do, then why am I so angry at God? And before I could even ask myself that question I came to the realization that yes, I am angry at God. I am angry that His will is that I have an autistic little boy that struggles and I am angry that our lives our so stressful because of it, and I am angry that no on understands, and I am angry that I feel so alone so many times.
There is no road map for what you are supposed to do if you feel this way. You are not supposed to be angry at God. And even as I thought about it I was waiting for lightening to come down and strike me. But it didn’t. All I was reminded of was His love. But things haven’t felt like they were orchestrated by love and that is what I am struggling with. How can I trust a God who gives me more than I feel capable of handling most days? How?
I read the Bible verses about those who endured through much worse trials than even I could ever imagine. I read about those who persevered and I wonder what is wrong with me? Why can’t I be like that? Why can’t I have the happy-go-lucky attitude that all the Christians are telling me that I am supposed to have.
Be postive. I hear. Rejoice in your trials. It is preached. God doesn’t give you more than you can handle. I have heard more times than I can count. But what if you are just not strong enough for all that? What if I am not perfect enough to be that way?
“Cease from anger, and forsake wrath…” – Psalm 37:8
God’s will is that I have a very sweet and dear autistic boy. I know that to be true. And I am so thankful for him, we really do love him so much. Is it fun to watch him struggle and be different from other kids? No. But does God have a plan in all this? Yes. And the thing is I have to learn to accept that.
So that is what I have been struggling with the past month. Learning to accept that this life is God’s will, and that yes, He loves me and yes, He has a plan. It’s not going to happen overnight. It’s going to take more time for me to see it, but I know in time I will accept this as God’s perfect and sovereign will.
A lot of my quietness on my blog has been from the above. Thinking. Praying. Accepting. Struggling. I have also been having severe fatigue and bad headaches for the past few weeks and it’s starting to take it’s toll. I have little energy left over at the end of the day for blogging and most weekends have been spend in bed sleeping due to being exhausted. Not sure if it’s just my crazy schedule with Adam or being pregnant or a little of both, but it makes me feel guilty. I hate to miss church and I hate that the house is a mess most of the time, and the piles of laundry are getting taller with each passing day.
I feel that the commitments I have made at church – nursery and singing in the choir have fallen to the wayside and I am upset about that because I have little energy left at the end of the week due to running Adam all over town for therapies and dealing with other issues as well. I wonder how many people are judging me because I haven’t been to church in weeks and how many people actually care. I watch all the people on Facebook have friends over on the weekends and all the good things that are happening and I just wonder how we got left at the bottom of all that. Is it because no one wants to have us over because our son is autistic? Sometimes I believe that is the case.
My husband and I worked in nursery twice this past Sunday and it was good to be in the same nursery as Adam and to see how he was doing. I was shocked to watch the interactions and learn that every single child in that nursery was petrified of my child. No one liked him. Some kids told their parents so. Some would hide from him if he came near them. And it just broke my heart in pieces.
Yes, my son is different. Yes, he does not understand how to interact with kids appropriately in a social setting. But he is learning and we are trying so hard to teach him. He gets up in kid’s faces because he doesn’t understand personal space, he gets over excited in a large setting like that, he tickles kids, but the other kid’s don’t understand that, they are just scared of him. He loves other kids, he is so excited to play with them, but he doesn’t understand personal space yet. It’s sad that he doesn’t have any friends because not many people want to have him over or because people don’t take the time to understand or explain to their kids that it’s ok he just wants to play.
I am grateful for my friend Kayla who is willing to do play dates whenever we can fit them in our schedule and because of that Adam is able to learn how to share and how to act better in a setting like that. Yes, he still acts out and gets over excited, but I am there to stop it and teach him not to do that.
It’s been a long month. Dealt with feeling sick a lot, dealing with multiple stresses, got a letter from a family member I have not talked to in several years which was upsetting, and learning to adjust our budget as we were not doing very well with it this month. All these have been huge stressors in my life and things I have been struggling with. I hope that June will be better and I can get back to blogging more. It has been a nice break to focus on the family and God, and I hope to continue that as well. As always thanks for reading.
Oh honey I’m so sorry. I wish we lived closer so I could have you over for playdates. It might be rough but I would try as heck to make it work so you wouldn’t feel so alone and Adam would have friends.
I think it’s okay to be angry – if we are telling God about our anger, it’s better than keeping it inside or ignoring it. I think God WANTS our honesty – Psalm 62:8 tells us to pour out our hearts to him. So tell him – tell him how it hurts, how you are angry, how you are exhausted, how you feel alone. Give him the ugly. He can handle it, and he can make it beautiful.
About commitments – remember there is a time for everything. I dropped out of choir when I was pregnant with Ezra, and aside from a short stint that quickly didn’t work out last summer, I haven’t been back. And you know me I LOVE music and love to sing and be involved. But I just realized it wasn’t time for me. I also haven’t worked in any nursery or childcare since Ezra was born – again. There is a time for me to do those sorts of ministries, and when I feel like I can barely handle my own child, It’s not time for me to handle other kids. Maybe it’s selfish, but I give myself grace. When my kids are teenagers, then maybe I will be able to work in the nursery with a much happier heart and give young moms like the mom I once was a much-needed break. But for now, when I go to church or Bible study – that’s MY time with God and about the only break I get from my son, so I stay away from those commitments.
Just something to think about. Read Ecclesiastes 3 when you get a chance. Love you!
love you sweet friend. I’m sorry you are struggling right now. Praying you have peace.
I wish you lived closer and we could do playdates with Adam <3 Elliara doesn't know about personal space yet, and she would love to have a friend all up in her "personal space" and elias could learn!
This hits so close to home for me..I understand these feelings because I have them as well. Its so painful to watch all the kids play and none of them want to play with my son or my son doing something inappropriate and being stared at like hes some monster. He has no clue how to play and mostly trys to copy other kids every move which they think is strange and they don’t want to be near him. And my youngest hits any child that gets near him so I’m always concerned for others safety, but other children and parents don’t understand he cant control it.
My house is always a disaster and I always feel like I’m in over my head, I hate having anyone over because the constant mess and because my children are so loud :/. My clothes are always shoved in baskets and I rarely get them washed before we run out of clothes.
We don’t go to church because last time we attended I had to carry Roland outside kicking and screaming twice and the judgment from everyone was just to much for me. We also don’t have friends and we NEVER get invited to anyones house no one wants to have my sons in there home. Plus all the doctors appointments for their medical issues and therapies for autism we have no time for much.
I have prayed till Ive cried so many nights. Ive been angry with God Ive asked why till I was blue in the face. WHY 2 autistic children plus various medical issues!! But autism or not they are my children and they are my gifts from God and its not my job to question His work, it my job to do all I can to keep them safe and get them through life so they can carry on whatever Gods will might be.
So remember its ok to feel low, but you are NOT alone. There are many of us going through these same things everyday. And there are many people to talk to that understand. You and Adam are welcome at my house anytime 🙂 If you can survive the verbal stimming and the mess 🙂
It is SO nice to see that you are human! I know that I am also doing god’s will – but that doesn’t mean I am not angry for my husband being deployed for a year OR for him choosing to make the army his career. I too have wondered why God would have put this person in my life and why I fell in love with a person who is making our life SO painful. I too wonder if God has made my life more difficult than I can manage. I am sure what you are feeling right now is because of the pregnancy, but it also seems when I am down and tired, that everything else is overwhelming! It isn’t a wonder that once my husband left on deployment that I lost my job and my son’s ADHD got worse, causing me to flip out when he forgets his homework or a book once again! I found myself unable to handle the simplest of things and getting down on myself that I was unable to handle things I used to handle (like having a job, refinancing my house). My therapist says that this is because I am depressed. Despite knowing this I am hard on myself and have had to learn to lean on my husband financially (when before I was the proud single mom who did it all) and to allow myself a day to get a massage (or recently I found a massage chair in a car wash that cost only $1 for 5 minutes that was fantastic!). I am getting better and feel less depressed, but I know that most of my difficulty is that I spend most of my time focusing on what I wish my life were (and what I wish my son was like, and what career I wish my husband had), instead of what it really is. I did come across an article written by Michael J Fox about how he copes with his Parkinsons Disease and he said that once he accepted his lot in life, that he was able to move on and do so much with his life that was left him. He said that everyone in life has a struggle to deal with – and that gave me hope as I’m not alone. He said that when he was first diagnosed, he though his friends had perfect lives. Now after 20 years he says that some of these friends have died of cancer and now he says, “would I have given up my struggle in exchange for cancer?”. He said no – because he knows that he would have lost the precious time he gets to spend with his wife and kids. So, although I cannot throw out my current life and start over as I want to do so often (and get the life with the spas and the luxury first class traveling), I do have a hard time getting to that point where I can accept my life. The serenity prayer in AA also helps me, “god help me to accept the things I cannot change and the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference” to feel a bit better. In the end I do still get mad at God and yet I know that in all of this that I am learning and God expects much of me and I am in the end doing my best – even if all I did this day was show up. It sounds like despite you not blogging regularly and doing laundry, you are showing up for your son and THAT is a success. Thank you for sharing your struggle – because you give me hope too that I am not alone.
I can somewhat understand – I’ve spent a lot of this year struggling with acceptance and/or anger. Knowing that God has a plan in everything that has happened (my daughter’s stillbirth mostly), but angry that he let it happen. It’s so, so hard to trust God 100% while being angry at what has happened.
I’m so sorry to read of the other kids’ reactions to Adam 🙁 How heartbreaking.
I can totally relate to this. I am so frustrated right now. I feel like I am struggling so much with my son. I need all the help I can get. We thought my husband was not deploying. I felt like it was such an answer to prayer because I felt like I really need my husband home right now. But then things changed and now he is leaving. I am mad. I am trying to figure out why this would happen. Let’s just say I am really trying to figure out what God is up to. I am not sure if I am just not understanding the role of him in my life or what. I am confused and so very frustrated.
And it is hard to have a child that other children don’t like. We were at Chuck-E-Cheese and my son freaked out. All the kids were looking at him and I heard a few say, “Oh there is that weird kid.” It broke my heart. I have realized that when I can get together with my friends and their kids it does go a lot better. It is still hard though.
*hugs and prayers*
I think that nice saying that Christians throw around about God not giving you more than you can handle isn’t true. I believe He does give us more than we can handle. If he didn’t we would never learn to rely on Him because there would never be the need to. On our own strength there is much we can’t do – but if we are leaning on His strength the impossible isn’t so impossible anymore. You have lots of hard things going on right now… remember he doesn’t mean for you to handle them all by yourself – he wants you to rely on Him and trust that he will carry you through it all.
YES! You took the words right out of my mouth. Believing this lie is what bogged my faith down for a long time. We ARE given too much to handle…ALONE. Only through God can we get through the tough times.
Thank you, Kathryn, for sharing your struggle and for your openness as always! And thank you to everyone who commented sharing your experiences as well. I agree with Nancy that everyone has their own struggle in life, and with Erika about God giving us more than we can handle. I’m finding myself asking how I can rely more on God through my struggles. Is it more prayer? Is it something else? I also start to question if I really did follow God’s will with the choices I made in life, or if it just seemed right at the time. I have no way of seeing the future and knowing how things might turn out, but is there a way I can be more ‘in tune’ with God and be sure I’m following His will? I would love to have help from any of you with these questions! maybe another post about them, Kathryn?
Thank you so much for being so honest about your feelings. I have been feeling very similarly. I have gone in and out of being “mad” at God regarding my special needs daughter. More time than not I feel grateful for all I have but when things get tough it’s hard to deal with all the feelings that come up. I believe God is perfectly cool with me being a little mad from time to time. Lol! I have learned that to move past the hard times I have to go through them. Not always easy. Please know my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family! So glad I found your site!!
I feel so many of these same feelings. I know that the Lord would not give me anymore than I can handle THROUGH HIM, but I sometimes do find myself doubting his plan for me. I am teaching in 3rd and 4th grade Sunday School next week on Job. What a wonderful reminder it has been to read about the trials Job went through all the while keeping his faith in God and not doubting God’s will for his life. It is a good reminder every once in a while to imagine what he went through in losing everything, from his animals, to his riches, to his children; yet he refused to be done with God. He knew there was a greater purpose in it all. After all he went through with his medical issues and being shunned even after all the other turmoil, he still refused to doubt the Lord. He was blessed so richly for his dedication to God with more than he had before in material things and more children!
It is so hard to watch our children not be accepted by others. Please remember that most of the time it is due to ignorance on their part (the parents and children). I do not mean this as a put down, I mean that they do not know how to deal with our children’s issues; or in turn how to teach their children how to deal with it. I hurt for my son so much when I see others making fun of him and refuse to include him in things. He never gets invited to parties or anything outside of church and neither does my daughter (I feel that is because they know I will have to bring my son). As he gets older it seems to just get harder on him and myself when these things happen. Then to get home and have to console my child who is always rejected by others is so hard. I want to scream, cry, hit whatever I can to get the anger out. But, I try to be the mother and Christian I need to be in encouraging him in faith to trust the Lord and all he has in store for him. There are times we miss church due to my son’s health or meltdowns and I feel like we are being judged. Something my Pastor preached about a while back hit home though. If you keep your eyes on the people of the church you will ALWAYS be let down in one way or another. But keep your eyes on GOD, and HE will never let you down. That’s not to say we will agree with everything God sends our way, but we should know that He will never lead us down a path alone.
God is with you, sweet lady. As He is me. We may have difficult obstacles in our everyday lives that others do not understand but it is ignorance on their part, not a fault of our own. I am praying that the Lord fills you with a sense of love that is overwhelming (in a good way) this week. I am so encouraged by your honesty in posting this. Thank you 🙂
Hello, I am angry with God as well. Know that you are not alone. I wrote a blog post about it here. http://catherinegacad.com/2013/06/05/are-you-there-god-its-me-catherine/ I’m so glad that I happened upon your blog. Will be following you.