Diving into Fear

I remember hearing my son’s heartbeat drop and the doctor saying in a low, serious voice, “We’re taking him [out] now.” It was a statement of what would transpire, not a request. I had dreaded this moment. There seemed to be some weird curse in the Estes line with baby boys being strangled at birth with the umbilical chord and so, for seven long months, I prayed against it, Pentecostal style – and yet here we were. I bore down hard to get him out ASAP – and suddenly, there he was! Tiny and blue with a chord around his neck – but alive!

I remember laying in the grass, two years later, holding my son and throwing the phone to my neighbor cause I couldn’t PRAY for him and talk to t he 911 operator at the same time. He seemed fine and all of a sudden started convulsing. A “fever seizure” they called it. They said it happened to lots of kids and he’d be fine.

Only he wasn’t. He later had stunted growth and dyslexia and dysgraphia…coincidence? Maybe. But maybe not…

Now, here we are, ten years later and still struggling. Regular school does not accommodate his learning disabilities very well so homeschooling it is. But i am weary and lacking confidence. Most days I could collapse from worry. Some days I do. What will become of my son who twists numbers and can’t spell worth a flip? Having come from a line of college graduates, I feel ill equipped to direct my son. I know nothing of trades, can’t even change my own tire.

The fears are real and wash over the back of my neck like a cold sheet. Some days it’s a fulltime job just keeping my worries at bay. From the beginning of his life I feel the Lord has been constantly trying to teach me the one phrase that He ever so gently whispers over me. “TRUST. ME.”

There’s a funny thing about trust: it’s dependent upon the unknown. It’s easy to “trust” when everything is fine and predictable and lovely. There’s just one problem: that’s not trust. It’s something, but it’s not trust.

Trust is bigger and confusing and MESSY. It’s unanswered questions on founded fears. It’s walking in the dark with nothing but a promise of firm ground. It is knowing all the “what if’s” and jumping in anyway. Trust is diving into the fear.

And so, I dive. Dive into the unknown future, not sure how to direct my son. I dive in, with lips trembling as a constant “Help me, Lord” plays across them. I dive in, remembering how I prayed for his life – not caring the difficult times that might come with it and not knowing when or if my efforts will reap a reward and cling to the one thing my Lord has been ever so calmly saying to me: TRUST.

How I wish Trust felt warm and cozy and safe. But it doesn’t. It feels like diving – your stomach in the top of your throat and your toes? Tingly. But the good news? These are where the miracles happen. This is where you get to see the Sea parted. This is where you finally learn that He can do exceedingly more than all we could ever hope and imagine.

All you have to do is dive.

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