This morning, like so many other mornings, started much earlier than I would have hoped. Our son’s special needs dictate our schedule every day. In fact, as those of you raising a child with special needs know, your whole life is pretty much dictated by that child.
Whenever Jon Alex wakes up, he doesn’t have any concept of time. So whether it’s 3:00am or 5:00am he just assumes it’s time to get up. Being non-verbal he first makes his unique sounds and then gets louder and louder until we go in to see and greet him.
He usually needs to be attended to first thing. Our entire morning routine revolves around him and attending to his needs. At breakfast, Becky prays over him and they spend time together as he eats his breakfast praying about his day. This continues on as they get in the car and drive to his school.
In the evenings after work as I swing him in his platform swing, that becomes our quiet time together. I pray over him and speak blessings and scripture over him. I always end by thanking him for being my son and remind him that God created him to be my son that we were made for each other and I wouldn’t want anyone else as my son but him.
Our evenings again revolve around him. Dinnertime, bath time, story time, bedtime. He determines when we go shopping, how we go out, where we go out, what we do and what we don’t do. routine
He is the center of our world. All of our plans revolve around him.
I stopped this morning to realize how much God wants and deserves the same from me. He should be the center of my life and world. Everything in my life should revolve around him. Every aspect of my life should be altered and affected by our relationship. routine
How he must crave me praying with him in the mornings and evenings. How he must want me to alter what I do and don’t do because of my relationship with him. How he surely must want me to plan every aspect of my life around his presence in my life. How he wants me to acknowledge I was made for him and that his love for me should compel me to want nothing more. How he must yearn to speak blessings over my life when I sit, listen, and spend time with him.
“In the morning O Lord you hear my voice…” (Psalm 5:3,NLT). routine
In so many ways I am his special needs son. I think that is why he is able to help me so much in this walk as a dad of a son with special needs.
Remain in me and I will remain in you.
No branch can bear fruit by itself. It must remain in the vine.
Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
John 15:4 NLT
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.