Grace is Sufficient

by montejosmemorials on February 22, 2014

On this night, four years ago, in the middle of an unbelievable snowstorm, we started a 4 hour treck to MUSC in Charleston. Just short of 1 year before that, we thought our lives had been changed in such a way that nothing could top it, when Daniel was born with Down Syndrome and a heart defect. As we were making the journey to Charleston that night, only God knew that the change we had experienced then, was incomparable to what was coming.

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When we pulled to the front of MUSC, I grabbed the carseat and went into the back door of the ER. As we took Daniel out of his carseat, I knew that something was incredibly wrong, but had the hope that I’d had many times through that year, that he would recover as he always had. God had been so faithful to sustain him and us. He even touched Daniel’s heart a few months earlier, the day before surgery, so that when we went in for preop, the surgery was canceled because they could find nothing wrong. Imagine the excitement in our home that night when we came in and our other children thought we would be gone for 10 days.  It was incredible to see God’s hand move that way! I thought we were homefree after that. Surely God had a plan to keep him with us after that victory!

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But, our thoughts are not His thoughts, nor His ways our ways.  The virus that had quickly overtaken Daniel’s body that day, was causing all of his organs to shut down. If something didn’t change, they did not expect him to live through the night. This was never what we had expected to hear! How could this be?

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He fought for 10 days and then went to be with the Lord. Even as Daniel was fighting to stay alive, I thought for sure he would pull through, because he had already overcome so much. It was really hard to understand why it had to drag out for ten days, when God could have just taken him and saved us a lot of extra pain.

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During those 10 days there were so many things that went through my mind. One of my biggest prayers during that time was that I could show that God was bigger than our circumstances. I didn’t understand any of it, but I still knew that no matter what happened, I had to trust God. He had blessed us with a Dr. that knew the Lord and he had promised us that when we reached the place that medicine was doing more harm than good, he would tell us. When that day came, he cried with us. It was such a comfort to me to realize how much he had come to care for our family.

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By the last day, I didn’t feel like I was doing a very good job of showing God through our circumstances, but I learned that God uses things that we don’t even realize. As the Dr. was talking with me, he told me that he had a word to describe our family. The word was grace. I was overcome with emotion at that time, because even though we felt out of control, God still managed to somehow shine through. He shined through the crying, the anger, our children in and out of that hospital room, the conversations overheard that we were praying for healing, but it may not come the way we wanted it to, explanations to our children, confusion, chaos. He shined through the realness and rawness of our circumstances, even when we were having a hard time seeing Him.

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERA GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERA GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERA I looked up grace and this is what Wikipedia had to say.

"In Christian theology, grace has been defined as "the love and mercy given to us by God because God desires us to have it, not because of anything we have done to earn it",[1] "the condescension or benevolence shown by God toward the human race".[2] It is understood by Christians to be a spontaneous gift from God to man – "generous, free and totally unexpected and undeserved"[3] – that takes the form of divine favor, love, clemency, and a share in the divine life of God.

It is an attribute of God that is most manifest in the salvation of sinners."

There were a few things that really rang true in that definition for us. Love and mercy that God desires us to have, not because of anything we have done, a spontaneous gift, free, unexpected, undeserved. These things certainly applied to us. The Dr. seeing grace in our family was a gift from God in answer to my prayer for Him to shine through. It was not because of anything we did and was totally unexpected and undeserved. I am so thankful for this grace that covered me then and covers me now! As Christians, we don’t have to be perfect, we just have to accept the gifts that God has given us. I choose to receive. p11383ta104054_18 p11383ta104054_8

And He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness." Most gladly therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Cor. 9-10

 

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So as we walk through these days and because of the anniversary, dwell more on the memories, we realize that the emotions are still real and raw. But it’s ok, because we will depend on that gift of grace, not because of what we have done or will do, totally unexpected and undeserved, but because of what He has given us. I choose to receive!

Daniel Benjamin Montejo

March 2, 2009 to February 22, 2010

We are thankful for the year he was with us and celebrate his life, which taught us more about love and grace than we could have ever learned another way.


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