Shared Suffering

“What doesn’t tear you apart will make you stronger.” I think I’ve read something like that once…

There’s nothing quite so sublime as to share suffering with another. Eric is the only person this side of heaven who understands the pain of the last 5+years. It is a shared suffering.

There was a time that the pain of Anne’s brain injury was so intense that it could not be shared but only endured. But now, as time and experience have numbed the sharp pain of loss, we have regained the capacity to carry one another’s burdens. This sharing of burdens is a door into deeper “oneness.” For Eric is the only one who knows the depth of loss and indescribable joy.

If shared suffering is our glue, then God is our rock. We stand on his sovereignty. We trust that all that led us to this present – the accident, the suffering, Anne’s recovery, and her new life – are all part of God’s perfect plan, not just for Anne, but for our whole family.

Somehow, we believe the accident saved us from ourselves – that God is using Anne’s brain injury and recovery to change the course of our lives for the better – even Anne’s life! For as hard as it is for her to live with a brain injury, for all the ridicule that she receives from her peers or the frustration she endures at not being able to control her own body, we trust that she is closer to Jesus because of it. And so are we – Eric, me, Canon and Kate – we are closer to Jesus. And we are grateful.

Years from now when Canon and Kate are gone, Eric and I will still have Anne. Sweet Anne. She is our glue. But we stand on our rock. Thank you Jesus.

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4 thoughts on “Shared Suffering

  1. Lu says:

    I’m soooo glad you are able to share with words again, rather than simply being in the experience. Wow.

    For so many, this kind of journey tears entire families asunder.
    They choose to NOT see Him silently moving, choose NOT to acknowledge all are experiencing heart-ache. Choose not to even fathom that there might be a “more” to the story.
    No, those aren’t necessarily conscious choices, but in my ministry I witness it time and time again.
    Sadly, there isn’t any healing, there isn’t any future, there is but chaos and pain and the inflicting of more pain on one another, forever escalating while draining all life.

    You all could have made these choices, but instead, you’ve reached out to community, allowed us to share the journey, the pain, the joy, in whatever ways we’ve had to offer….allowed us to simply be with you, while you traveled wherever your hearts and lives needed to go….and amazingly, shared openly along the way.

    Thank you for your post today and for the Hope and Life it speaks of, on sooooo MANY levels.

    You continue to be in and on my heart, with love and prayer-songs steadily flowing….

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Mary Ellen says:

    Oh Kathryn, thank you so much for sharing your journey with us. Only God could provide such strength, comfort, faithfulness and love through such sorrow. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Lu Wings says:

    Been thinking of you all and wondering how you are.
    You’re on my prayer-postit-note on my computer, so you’re prayed for daily. This is a different kind of being-on-my-heart.
    Hope no news is good news and you’re simply busy living life.

    Like

    • Yes, Lu…so busy with teaching more classes, managing Anne’s therapy schedule and the one additional extra-curricular we allow…Kate’s cross country season ended in October and canon’s basketball season just started in November! Anne will have another round of TheraSuit therapy in December – I’ll write about that soon :) thank you so much for continuing to pray. I’m so thankful for you!!

      Like

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