His stroke has changed my life and my families lives in some pretty big ways. It has left it’s mark on my dad both physically and emotionally. At times it has been scary, difficult, frustrating, sad and very humbling.
But at the same time it has moved my family to a better place. Our relationships are stronger, we love and value each other more, and God has become even more real to us.
Here is a note my Dad recently wrote on Facebook. I hope you can be encouraged by this no matter what difficult situation you find yourself in today:
“I fear that I haven’t given God the credit He deserves in my life…
Prior to my stroke, I was a very controlling and organized person, in my life and in my faith. Due to my very anal organization skills, I really didn’t have much of a need for help and I didn’t really seek it. This stroke has been a huge pain, and I’ve prayed so hard for God to remove it and restore me… (But it’s kind of cool being that close to death and being saved by The Savior.)
I don’t believe for a second that God did this to me, but I believe he allowed it in order to correct my faith. That’s what happens when you don’t listen to all of the little kicks in the head, He’ll finally allow the carpet to be pulled out from under you! He has always carried me like this, in every aspect of my life. Giving me more than I deserved or could do on my own…
Recently, thanks to my lovely Lynda and my doctor (Ray Turnure) who have preached God’s goodness and love until I was ready to kill them, I have come to understand things better. I now suffer this thing with God in His kingdom, where all suffering has meaning. My pain has been an opportunity to trust and lean on God, even thanking him for it! Which I understand is an extremely high form of praise.
When I suffer I remember that He is sovereign and can bring good out of anything. Even this! I now accept it in His name, offering it up to him for His purposes. This makes my suffering have meaning and draws me closer to him.
Realizing that in my weakness, He is strong!
In my strength, I never allowed God his right place on my life, instead I relied on human strength. (How stupid, I knew better after years of church, but somehow believed I knew what I should do.) All I attempt to do now, no matter the difficulty, I can succeed because of God! I praise God for EVERY day of my life.
Simply put, God is good and I’m finally in a good place. I await all of the great things that He brought me here for!”
– Brad Barber