Sunday, March 6, 2016

Look up and close your eyes

My son Lex dislikes taking a bath. He didn't always hate it. I remember a time when he was eight months old and he just started using the baby tub, he'd play with his rubber duckies and he'd enjoy the water. When he turned one, for some reason he started being averse to the water. His yayas had to make a production of sing and dance in the shower to distract him from the water getting into his eyes while they rinse shampoo off his head. This was actually the reason why I also dreaded bathing him the first few days sans yaya.  

In the two and a half months that I'm the one personally giving him a bath, I have tried so many strategies to make him unafraid of water entering his eyes. I tried letting him bow down low but he is still very much afraid that when water starts cascading down his head, he would lift his head and guess what will happen?

Lately I tried telling him to look up and close his eyes. I thought that rinsing his head "salon-style" would be a much better tactic than making him bow down low since it obviously wasn't working. Last night, I went down to his eye-level, looked him the eye and told him, "Trust me, Lex. Look up and close your eyes. Trust me, anak." Guess what? it still didn't work. He still cries out of fright. I am determined to be consistent in telling him to trust me but if it still won't work soon, then I am resigned to just let him outgrow the fright on his own.

And then I realized how symbolic that moment was. Because isn't that how we are also with God? In the midst of our circumstances, God tells us to "look up and close our eyes" but we don't. We try to fight off the burden on our own, not trusting that God can and will do a better way. In the same way, even if God is consistent in telling us to trust in Him, we need our faith to grow in order to really understand what He is telling us. That we need not do anything. Need not worry about anything. But trust in Him. Surrender to Him wholeheartedly.

Recently there has been an article circulating in Facebook about Courageous Catie, a three and a half year old girl diagnosed with JMML, a rare form of leukemia. Even as a parent, I cannot begin to fathom how much grief her parents must be feeling. I can only imagine it to be so immense and overwhelmingly paralyzing. But indeed, as I follow news via their Facebook Page and blog, I can see God moving in every direction. 

Not all parents have the faith Catie's parents have. And I am really amazed, as in really amazed at the amount of faith that is shown by Jayjay and Tine. It is truly inspiring in every way. 

Here's an excerpt of a status that was posted last March 3 in Courageous Catie's Facebook Page:
"Today, I have been flooded by messages that our life story is inspiring and encouraging. That Caitie's story is spreading like wildfire. Honestly, at the back of my mind I didn't want to be. Like any parent, I simply wanted my daughter to be healed. If only all the messages, help and gifts could cure Caitie by the cell. This is all I wanted. I don't want and don't care to be inspiring. 
Then tonight, I broke down in tears when I received a letter from someone who has been visiting everyday and giving us letters. Yesterday she shared how she realized from our journey that suffering should not be wasted. And today she shares that she is still waiting for the results of her lump. Even with a financial problem, she still gave to help us. 
Strangers who come in and cry with us, who go through sickness and emotional pain themselves have learned and continue to learn how to respond and experience a revival in their relationship with Jesus because of Caitie's life. I cried because I was so selfish. Who am I to stop God from speaking through our pain to a person. Each person has their own battle to face. Ours may be in sickness but for others, it may be emotional, mental or financial battles. The manner is different but the pain is the same! We are not alone. 
We bless others because we ourselves have been blessed. Somewhat a great circle of life. 
Another step forward maybe so difficult but it moves us closer to the kind of person we should be."
I wish I never have to live through the pain or worse, a death, of a loved one. But if I ever do, I wish that I can have even an ounce of faith and grace that Catie's parents have shown through this whole ordeal.

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