Sunday, October 25, 2009

God Does Not Intend for Us to Suffer

I have been reading this blog of a family with a child with Down's Syndrome and on one post she asked the question to her readers,

If there was a way to take away the extra chromosome away from your child and make them "typical" would you do it?

And why?

At least a dozen people responded and I was struck with the variety of answers. Many said, "no" they couldn't imagine their child a different way, and mentioned the joy he or she had brought in their life. Some who answered no in this way admitted they were being selfish, which I admired. A few answered, "yes" in a heart beat because of the pain and struggles their child had gone through. Of all the answers this one really aggravated me:

"For me this is an easy one! I would not take away Erin's extra 21st anymore than I would take away any other genetic trait that she has, as that is a piece of her that God created. I trust He knows what He is doing
Smile. I would also not wish for my other kids to have T21 because that is not what God intended for them. I want what God wants. Over the past 22 months, my hubby and I have felt incredibly blessed to have our little Erin, as we believe she is a gift not only for us but for the world. Yes, our kids are hidden treasures! We sure have grown to love that little something extra!"

Okay, while I do believe God created this beautiful person and in his eyes she is perfect, the fact that this parent thinks God intended for her to have this disability is appalling. I would have agreed with this person (with some reservations) before I read the book When Bad Things Happen to Good People by Harold S. Kushner, but now I can see that God INTENDED for no pain or suffering for any of us. And to say "I want what God wants" is great, but does he WANT this little one to suffer with Down's? When he created her did he think, I want her to suffer. As Kushner says in his book, does God go around joyfully doling out depression, cancer, or MS diagnoses. Hell, no! Because as much as we gain from children with Down's aren't we being selfish and heartless to say "If I were to give son/daughter with Down's freedom, I would choose not to." Here is another post where I have similar thoughts.

I don't know because I have often thought of that with my depression, would I want to be TOTALLY free? My depression is NOT me but it is a PART of me. It has truly influenced every ounce of my being and brought me to an incredible understanding of people and life and faith. So, maybe God did intend me to have it; or could we say, he forsaw (is this a word) my life with depression and my life without...and then did he just choose to allow the former. Anyway, I guess, in essence, I am torn because I understand people who say "My ____ (insert, cancer, e.g.) is the best thing that ever happened to me" but then I still don't believe God wanted them to be struck with it...More on this later.


  1. I agree with you 100%! God does not want us to suffer. I look at my life and I have and still do have health issues. I do not believe God created us to suffer here on earth. It comes with the fall of man. I do believe he can use our suffering for his Kingdom. God's hands are so obvious in some people's situations. His miracles and healing blow me away sometimes and I am once again reassured that their is a God! How we handle our suffering can glorify his Kingdom as well. Great post that I could related to a lot!

  2. Lovin' it Britt... great thoughts!