I like all the items on my desk to be in straight lines and equally spaced. I don’t want the food items on my plate to touch each other. The icons on my computer screen need to be symmetrical and uniform.
Even the pens in the little pouch on the back of the chairs at church need to be perfectly upright so as to not be visually distracting to me.
For most of my life, that’s how I’ve viewed God and how I’d prefer that he operate.
Hey God, would you please move in a predictable, orderly fashion in my life so I can perfectly understand what you are doing and where to find you at all times?
I like a God who is patterned and who structures my life in a neat, tidy, and perfectly uniform manner.
But the longer I follow God, and the longer I continue on this journey as a parent of child with special needs, the more I realize that finding God and understanding his plan for my life involves going outside the margins of the page.
When God writes our story he builds in a lot of white space.
White space. Margin.
The parts of your life that sometimes seemingly challenge your understanding and knowledge of God. The parts of your life you wish were not part of your story.
Those long dry seasons of wandering in a spiritual wilderness. Where your life feels like it’s veered off the page and left the course.
A serious illness, a new diagnosis, the death of a family member, a change in your finances or job status.
I am learning that in the margins of my life, when God seems silent and distant that in fact, he is usually closer to me and speaking more loudly than I could imagine.
When I don’t feel like I can see his hand, I must trust his heart.
When my life story lacks order and I feel like I have wandered into the white space, I must remind myself that God allows this room in our lives to grow and develop our trust and faith.
Just because I can’t hear him doesn’t mean he isn’t speaking. Sometimes you can hear God the loudest in the margin.
As special needs parents we must not fear the white spaces in our lives. We must realize that the biggest manifestation’s of God’s presence in our lives is often displayed in the margins.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
and he will make your paths straight.
What area of your life do feel is your “white space” where you need to press into your faith in God more?
By Jeff Davidson
Husband to Becky, Father of one
1 Corinthians 13 Parenting Team Member
Rising Above Ministries
Author of No More Peanut Butter Sandwiches: a father, a son with special needs, and their journey with God