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The Lesson on Acceptance

posted Apr 6, 2010, 9:32 PM by Elisa Lui   [ updated Apr 6, 2010, 9:36 PM ]
December 2008

On April 7th, 1993, my mother suffered a massive stroke that paralyzed the right side of her body and impaired her speech permanently. She asked God numerous times “why me?” She could not understand how a loving God would allow such tragedy to happen in her life, especially when our family just migrated to the United States and my parents were struggling to pay the mortgage while providing for the family? “It is not fair!” She yelled to God. She was anger at God for not intervening when HE had the power to so. The day before her stroke, she began to have difficulty speaking and she went to see a doctor, but the doctor just told her to get more rest and sent her home. Why did not God give the doctor the wisdom to hospitalize her? My mother was convinced that she could have been spared from this devastation if she was hospitalized that night.

The months following the stroke were the most agonizing time in her life. The sorrow, the pain, the helplessness, the loneness and the frustration she felt at that time were beyond any words could describe. What used to be a simple task such as walking, dressing and brushing teeth was a new challenge for her. She could no longer take care of herself and must rely on the assistance of my family.

Yet the most difficult part of this ordeal was her inability to express her feelings. Since the stroke caused a blood clog between her left and right brains, she lost the ability to say and write out her thoughts. She wanted to share with others the emotions inside her heart, but God even took that away from her. Her friends came to visit at first, but with time they stopped coming because they did not want her to feel embarrassed when they did not understand her baby talk. She spent countless days sobbing to the four walls of her bedroom.

I wish I could say her faith in God motivated her to live, but that was not true. What kept her going was her hope to recover completely. She spent hours each day exercising with the belief and expectation that she would soon recover fully. She asked God to heal her, but one, five and ten year passed by and she hardly made any progress. She still couldn’t say much more than a few words, nor could she move her right hand and the lower parts of her right leg. Her optimism quickly faded into disappointment and depression.

It took God over fifteen painful years to help my mother to accept her disability as part of HIS plan for her. Although she still does not know why God engineered this stroke in my life, she no longer needs to know the reasons. In Matthew 7:9-11, God said, “Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!” My mother trusts that our heavenly Father would not withhold anything good from her. HE did not heal my mother because her disability was HIS gift to her.

Today, my mother sees the stroke as a blessing, which allow her to enjoy the love and care of a very close family even to this day. She views it as a blessing to her children because it helped my younger brother and I to grow up maturely at an early age and provided the circumstance for us to receive scholarships for our college educations. The stroke has also strengthened her marriage by teaching her how to totally depend and submit to my father’s leading and causing my father to truly lay down every bit of his life to care for my mother. Most importantly, God used the stroke to draw my mother closer to HIM and allowed her to grow spiritually. The joy and peace in my mother today makes her the wealthiest person I know because many people are still searching for the contentment she obtained.  Learning how to accept God’s plan in our life is often difficult, but my mother has mastered it with a grateful heart.