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“I will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.” He Himself will deliver you from the hunter’s net, from the destructive plague. He will cover you with His feathers; you will take refuge under His wings. His faithfulness will be a protective shield.” (Psalm 91:2-4)
I cannot tell you how many times I have prayed prayers like this to God over the past few months. When Treshia & I found out that we were pregnant in July, my prayers all revolved around the heath of our baby and the health of my wife. In faith I prayed for protection for my wife and unborn child and believed that everything would be perfect, just like it was for our first three children. Then on August 30th, we found out that our baby boy had Down Syndrome and my prayers changed…
“Answer me, Lord, out of the goodness of your love; in your great mercy turn to me. Do not hide your face from your servant; answer me quickly, for I am in trouble. Come near and rescue me…” (Psalm 69:16-18a)
I felt like I was drowning. It was all so overwhelming and I felt like I couldn't handle it all. How could this happen? What does this mean for my boy? What does this mean for my family? How can I handle a special needs child? But then as time progressed, I learned about Down Syndrome, and what it will probably mean for all of us, and I began to feel God's peace that He would be my source of strength and guidance, especially in the tough times. Recently, someone asked me if I have felt any anger towards God about Timothy's Down Syndrome. This one caught me by surprise because I had always focused on the pain that came with the news, but not how I felt about the God who chose this for my son. As I sat there in silence, I realized that while I didn't feel angry, my father's heart within me was crying out…
“This isn't fair God! He hasn't even breathed his first breath and he already has so much stacked against him! He will have to face difficult therapies, heart surgery, and the stares and comments from others. It is too much for him. PLEASE do not give this to him to carry! Please give it to ME and I will carry it for him!!! Take it from him and put it on me.”
But this morning, something hit me….I wonder if this is the same prayer Jesus prayed to His Father over me? “It is too much for him. Please do not give this to him to carry. Please give it to Me and I will carry it for him. Take it from him and put it on me.” And for the first time in history, God did just that.
“For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)
Brian Kuiper is a contributing writer for Dad Matters and the Assistant Manager of Audio Visual Services at Focus on the Family.
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My name is Garry, I live in Australia, and I thank you for your articles on Timothy and him having Down Syndrome, you see I am exactly in the same place that you are, my unborn child also has Down Syndrome. We are just over half way through our pregnancy and have been on an incredible journey over the last 7 weeks since we found out. I am wondering if there is some way that we could keep in contact?