James 1:2-4 (NLT)
2 Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. 3 For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. 4 So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.
The apostle tells us that when we face adversity in our lives that we should count it as joy as opposed to sadness. For in the face of adversity our faith is tested and we have a chance to grow stronger in life. Therefore we should be joyful to face the adversity and let it develop us through our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be perfect and complete, needing nothing.
Our 26 year old daughter is experiencing a psychiatric issue. This problem doesn�t just affect her, but also affects the people around her. For in her current mental state the words she can use are like venom that brings pain. She vents anger like hot steam blowing into your face. You know you have done nothing to deserve the words she spews, but they sting, they burn and they hurt.
In an instant her mood flips to one of kindness and love. Words a second ago now confuse you as she expresses words of gratitude and love. She is pleasant, kind and then she starts complaining about all the things that are wrong and then she begs for help. Yes, it�s very confusing, but we also know she is ill.
My wife and I went through this with our daughter from the age of 18-19. It was one of the hardest times of our life. It was difficult to explain to others the problems we faced. Each medication was trial and error until they found something that worked. The medications were a challenge in their own way because they brought on serious side effects that had to be dealt with. Eventually she did become well.
Our daughter got married in November and her husband knew about this problem before he married her. Knowing about a problem and experiencing it are two completely different things. This has been difficult for him watching her change constantly before his eyes. What was so loving and kind at times isn�t so loving and kind. My daughter asked my brother-in-law and sister-in-law to visit her in the hospital. They had never been in her presence when she was going through this phase and it was difficult for them to be present with her, but God bless them for being there and wanting to help her.
My wife and I know the verses in James 1:2-4 are true. We are facing once again the issue we faced years ago with our daughter. This time we are more confident in our actions. It is painful placing a loved one in a psychiatric hospital, but it is also reassuring they are safe. Sometimes we want to give into fear, but we know God has brought us through this before. Sometimes we want to cry, but we learned we can be stronger than we thought.
Fortunately we can use our strength from the past to encourage her husband that things will return back to where they were, maybe even better. We know God can bring about healing and we just have to be patient for the healing to take place through the hands of the doctors. For God is still working on us, developing us and teaching us what we can be. God is also developing her and her husband. I know if her husband can endure this, his relationship with her will grow stronger. And I know our daughter will love him more for his courageous love and support.