When Your People Don't Get It
But Moses' hands were heavy; and they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat thereon; and Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun.
Turn thee unto me, and have mercy upon me; for I am desolate and afflicted.
But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.
Special needs parenting has some special aspects to it. One of these may be when the people in your life don’t really “get it.” This is hard. When your extended family feels it is your responsibility to “control” your special needs child, it feels hard. When a teacher is unwilling to work with you in a way that will benefit your child, it feels unfair. When a neighbor whispers or gives unkind, unasked-for advice, it feels maddening. These are the situations when you need to remind yourself that God is in control. God created your child specifically. Also, please remember that you are your child’s advocate here on earth, but he or she has a heavenly advocate who is working on his or her behalf daily. Pray and ask God to reveal to you all the things you need to parent this child wisely, and to let harshness of others just fall to the wayside.
When your people don’t get it, it can feel lonely. Recognize that your job is to parent and to love, not to change other people’s heart and minds - that’s God’s job. Release that to Him, and just keep walking out your family life as missionally as possible. When you hit a hard situation or a compassionless person, remember that the God who deeply loves you and yours may be working on that person’s heart specifically.
Protect your child. Cover your child in love, and leave the rest of it to the One who is in the business of changing hearts. Know that as others watch you parent the family you have been given, you are a living testimony. And in the moments when you feel ill-equipped or just plain weary, pray specifically that God would send you people to hold your arms up, to speak truth to you, and to support you and yours. That’s the church being the church...and that, friends, is a beautiful thing.