Posts Tagged ‘4-30-2017’

God Is There 4-30-2017

Sunday, April 30th, 2017

Six-year-old Andrew Bateson came down with bacterial meningitis, an aggressive disease that almost cost the little boy his life. In order to save Andrew, doctors had to amputate his legs where the disease had destroyed his circulatory system. Andrew was devastated when he discovered what had happened to him; Andrew couldn’t understand why he couldn’t have his “old legs back”.
His mother, Rebecca, wasn’t doing much better. She tried to keep up a positive disposition for her son—but she wondered how Andrew would handle the next chapter.
And she felt betrayed—betrayed by God.
After months of agonizing rehabilitation with his new prosthetic legs, Andrew finally went home.
Then one night at supper, out of nowhere, Andrew said, “I saw God, Mommy. I was sleeping at the hospital. He put his arms out, and I thought he was going to give me a hug. But instead he just touched me on the shoulder”.
His mother steeled herself. “Did God say anything?”
“No, he was just….there”.
A chill ran down his mother’s spine. Rebecca writes: “[God] was just there. What did that mean? I looked at Andrew, wolfing down his dinner. For months I had seen a handicapped child, a damaged child, fighting as hard as he could, failing more often than succeeding in his rehab. Falling down, unable to master his new legs. Yet, unlike me, never turning bitter, never giving up. “I’m going to walk, I’m going to ride my bike”, he’d insist, “You just watch”.
And Rebecca realized: “Andrew came through this better that I have. He was moving on. I was stuck in my bitterness and sense of betrayal…Had God been there all along for me too, and I was just too angry to see? Was he there for me now? Lord, thank you for being with Andrew. Be with me now, too”.
In closing, remember this: The Risen Christ is here, in our midst, in the love of family and friends, in the care of doctors and nurses, in the support of pastors and ministers, in the wisdom of teachers and counselors. The disciples on the road to Emmaus finally realize his presence in the breaking of bread; Rebecca finally grasps God’s presence in the unshakable, determined faith of her little boy. Every one of us has traveled the road the two disciples walked on Easter night; many of us have made the journey that Andrew and his mom and dad traveled. It is the road of deep disappointment, sadness, despair, anger. But God assures us, in his Easter promise, that along those roads he will make himself known to us. If our eyes are open, we will meet him in his Christ: in the compassion and generosity of others, in the breaking of bread and the healing touch of the sacraments, in the grace and wisdom of his Spirit in our midst. May our hearts and consciences always be open to behold the presence of Christ, our guest and companion along the many roads we walk to our own Emmauses.
His mother asked, “Did God say anything?” Andrew answered, “No….He was just there”!