A few years ago, I came to a totally new understanding of a passage from the Bible in Mark 4 when Jesus falls asleep in a boat and his disciples wake him up when a storm comes. I wrote about it then, but it has been reposted on Not-Alone.org (a site I recommend for anyone who has children with special needs and would like some spiritual encouragement), so I thought I would repost the beginning of it here as well:
After Penny was diagnosed with Down syndrome, there were days when I felt as if I was drowning. I could almost feel my lungs filling up with water. I could almost see my murky surroundings, the distorted objects and the light filtering through. I thought I would never come to the surface.
Back then, my head was filled with questions and my heart was filled with dread. I was scared of the life we would live as a family. I was scared that Down syndrome would take our daughter away from us. I was scared that I just wasn’t up to the task of having a child with special needs.
In that time, I found great comfort in a passage from Mark 4. Here, Jesus and his disciples set out across a lake. Jesus falls asleep. And then a storm comes up. It’s a tremendous storm, and the disciples work furiously to keep the boat afloat. Finally, one of them shakes Jesus awake and yells, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?”
I love it. They are so scared, so exhausted, so certain that their situation is a desperate one, that they cut right to what they are thinking. No false piety here.