Tuesday, November 3, 2015

My Dad: What Parkinson's Didn't Take

We can't always control what happens to us. We can eat right, exercise, and all of that...but some things are just out of our control.

God allows circumstances in our lives that are for our ultimate good, and for His glory.

I know.

I don't always "get" it, either. I just choose to believe it.

Take my precious, Dad, for instance. To other people, he may look like a feeble, old man...but to me, he's a giant. He has a faith that has carried him through the ups and downs of life...including the death of my mom after nearly 40 years of marriage.

He was a tall, strong, active man, but Parkinson's has taken away his height, strength and some physical abilities. It has taken away his independence. To some extent, it's taken away his pride. He is unbalanced, and walks slowly, because he doesn't want to fall. He speaks softly, because the words don't come as fast. He needs help with some routine things, and every task takes longer. He's frustrated. He and Clara are trying to find a balance of patience, understanding and sacrifice that works for both of them.

What Parkinson's has NOT taken away is my Dad's sweet spirit. It hasn't taken away his gentle heart. It hasn't taken away his love for people, or his desire to share his faith. It hasn't taken away his quick wit.

What I pray for my Dad, is that he'll have strength for all of his days. Not necessarily physical strength, altho that'd be great! But that he will remain strong in his heart, still loving and encouraging others...accepting his circumstances, whether God makes them better or not...continuing to seek wisdom and comfort from the Lord...and sharing the Gospel with the ones God puts in his path.

Like my Dad, everyone has a story. God's still writing my Dad's...and He's not finished.

"This is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are[e]being renewed every day. For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever." 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

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