His Grace is Sufficient

I am hanging out in the pediatric wing of Baptist Memorial Hospital. I’m here with Allie, my 8 month old. She had a fever with a mean cough and runny nose for a couple of days. Then the cough turned into a wheezing, and it was clear she was having trouble catching her breath. So I took her to the pediatrician, pretty much expecting him to tell me it was just a bad cold. He didn’t.

After listening to her lungs, doing a complete blood count, and measuring oxygen levels before and after an Albuteral treatment, the doctor said she had bronchiolitis. Basically, the lining of her airways were swollen, making it harder for her to breathe. This was caused by a nasty cold virus called (RSV). The virus also caused her airways to become infected, resulting in pneumonia. She had a ton of mucus in her chest, and because she is so little, she doesn’t have the muscle power to cough that crud up. So her little swollen lungs filled with mucus.

Our pediatrician calmly told me to drive Allie directly to the hospital. Oddly, I never experienced any anxiety. I was not worried at all. Don’t get me wrong, I was concerned. I just wasn’t emotional about it. I felt like I was being sent on an adventure.

When we got to the ER, the receptionist pulled up the order from our pediatrician. As he read it, his eyes got big, and he said, “Oh, they are going to call her right back.” I thought, “Wow, he must think she’s in pretty bad shape,” but I never got overly excited about it. And when the ER doctor told us we were definitely being admitted, I didn’t panic. When I saw my baby wearing oxygen, an IV, a heart monitor, and an oxygen monitor, I wasn’t overwhelmed with sadness.

When we made it through the first night, and the pediatrician checked her the next morning, and she said, optimistically, we would not be going home for 3 more days, I never felt scared.

I began to wonder if my lack of worrying meant I was a bad parent. I began to worry because I wasn’t worried. I wasn’t the mom who was constantly crying and too worried to sleep. And part of me felt like I should’ve been that worked up. But then a friend reminded me of a discussion our Sunday School class had two weeks ago.

We were talking about joy and how God wants us to be joyful in all circumstances. Our class batted around possible definitions for joy and wondered how one could be joyful in the midst of terrible circumstances, like when your infant is hospitalized with a severe illness. We decided that joy is an inner peace and confidence in God’s goodness and His sovereignty, no matter what happens. One of my classmates wisely noted that we can’t imagine ourselves having the capability of being joyful when the worst is happening to us. It’s not until we are actually in the tragic situation that God, through His sufficient grace, offers us the ability to choose joy. Make no mistake, it’s a choice. God doesn’t force joy into our hearts. But He offers us the truth that He is both good and sovereign, completely in control of the situation. We can choose to believe God and be comforted, or we can choose to not believe God and be anxious.

Maybe my sense of peace throughout Allie’s hospitalization was because I trusted God with my child’s health. I’d like to think so. It’s either that, or I am emotionally deranged. You be the judge.


10 thoughts on “His Grace is Sufficient

  1. Kelly, I want to affirm you as my sister in Christ. You’re handling this magnanimously.mag·nan·i·mous [mag-nan-uh-muhs]–adjective1. generous in forgiving an insult or injury; free from petty resentfulness or vindictiveness.2. high-minded; noble.3. proceeding from or revealing generosity or nobility of mind, character, etc.You’ve been wrapped in the warmth of God’s eternal perspective, His peace, which transcends all understanding.You know, we read that line in the Bible: “…[His] peace, which transcends all understanding…”And I wonder if this is not just exactly what the words are referring to. The ability to experience peace (from Him) in the midst of circumstances that should normally defy peacefulness. Said another way, miraculous peace.Every child of God can tap into it. But you’re right…you have to make the choice when it’s presented. The same God who gives you the circumstances to contend with, also supplies you with all the resources you need to manage those circumstances exactly the way He desires.Good stuff, Kelly. I love hearing your heart through what you write. Bring it on! :-)…jp

  2. I am very proud of you and SO happy that you might be going home today. Seems like she has gotten a lot better since last night even…sweet little girl. She really is a trooper and so are you. Your girls are luck to have a mommy with perspecitive and that chooses to trust God with them!

  3. I'm so glad you were able to find God's joy and peace through this situation. I hope we can all do that in the midst of trouble. I'm so glad she's home! It looks like she had joy through it all too- so cool!

  4. awesome stuff! i have a friend who needs to hear this little message RIGHT NOW so i'm sending to her! thanks!

  5. Based on everything I know, I'd have to say that you're emotionally deranged. But that's one of my favorite things about you! And based on the way Allie handled the whole situation, it sounds like she's inherited your derangement. Her teenage years should be a blast. God speed 😉

  6. Philippians 4:6-7"6Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."There is comfort in knowing you have a group of people praying for you, interceding to the Father on yours and your family's behalf.

  7. Kelly,Isn't it just like our God to send you guys through this on the back side of our discussion and your "wrestling" with the question about any situation being 100% sucky?I am so glad that you decided to share the story and your perspective. It is God's sufficient grace in a time of trouble that has been put on display and I know He is using this to encourage others.Well done, sister. Growing in Him is an amazing thing to participate in with you guys.

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