This afternoon we traveled to Louisville to visit little Emily in the hospital. Emily, who has been diagnoised with Infantile Spasms, had a g-tube inserted today for feeding a special diet. Her mommy, Erica, does a great job of explaining the ins and outs of IS and the diet here.
But this post isn't about IS, or the diet... in fact, it isn't about Emily... my post is about her parents, Joe and Erica. I want to tell you what I see as I watch them with their little princess.
We've been friends with Joe and Erica for awhile now... we have officially adopted them into our family, and while they do not share our earthly DNA, we are related through the blood of Christ. We shared in their sadness when Erica had a miscarrage... we shared in their joy when they found out that Emily was on the way. We were there for her birth, and we were there on the day they dedicated her to the Lord. And I have been amazed by the love that this young couple has showered on their daughter. She was loved from the beginning, and is more loved today, than she was yesterday.
The struggles that they have endured over the past three months have been enough to crush the spirit of even the most solid Christian among us. I have watched as they have ridden wave after wave of highs and lows. From the diagnosis, and all of the uncertainty that came with it, to the medications that offered a cure yet failed, to the surgery that she just went through, Joe and Erica have walked on the edge of a cliff that is so high, there is no solid ground in sight. And through it all they have tried desperately to hold on to their faith, and I know that they must be hurt, angry and desperate for their little girl to be healed from this disease.
I have watched as Satan has whispered lie after lie to them, trying to lead them to believe that God does not care, that he is distant, that there is no hope. I have watched as people have lifted them up, showing them the love of Christ, and I have watched as Satan has used people to try and lead them away from all that they know to be true about the God who loves them so deeply. And I wonder... how will they continue under such a heavy weight. And I wonder if they will remain strong, trusting that God is in control... and that HIS control is good enough.
And then, tonight as I stood and watched them lovingly help Emily as she had a cluster of spasms, I was struck by the looks on their faces.... that look that is only seen when a parent looks at their child... that look that says, "I love you more than I can explain, you are mine, and I am here for you! You are NOT alone." That look that was on their faces, it says it all... they will never give up, they will never leave her side, no matter how hard the road may get... they will love her with a love so strong THEY don't even understand it.
THAT is the very love that God has for each one of his children... and seeing the looks on their faces helped me to get a glimpse of how God's face must look as he looks down on me... I am completely and totally humbled by the thought. God... the creator of the universe... the great I AM... looks down on me and says, "I love you more than I can explain! You are mine! I am here for you! You are NOT alone!"....
And to Joe and Erica... I just want you to know that he is looking down on each one of you with that same look of love... and that he must be so very proud of you as you care for and love your little angel. And just as you will never leave Emily's side... he will never leave yours! And no matter how rough the road gets... he will love you with a love that is so strong you will find rest there if you allow yourself to do so.
I am proud of you both, and I am blessed to count you as a part of my family. I will continue to pray for Emily's healing, and for strength for you to withstand the whispers and the lies that Satan will use to lead you away from what is right and true. And I want to thank you both for the lesson that I learned tonight as you allowed me a glimpse into what love looks like.