Not A Typical Call

September 6, 1996

On December 11, 1995, I asked God "What is my call?". I heard back, "Be a good father and do the best you can for him."

Not a typical call. More like a general expectation He would place on any parent. Jacob, however, was not a typical child. Moments before I heard this call the doctor had told me my two year old son was autistic. Despite my immediate grief and confusion, a part of me felt immense peace and clarity. I cannot explain the contradiction, except to say God was there telling me here was His purpose for me.

Time has tested this calling. I believe I have grown spiritually, learning to rely on God's guidance in helping my son. When government autism programs were unavailable, it led me to find private therapies that turned out to be more effective. Experienced people started approaching us first when we needed volunteers to work with Jacob. Parents and professionals now come to me to ask about the therapy we do with Jacob. Instead of sorrow and despair, I now have joy and hope in God.

Not a typical call. But a call nonetheless.

Jacob is learning steadily, but has a long way to go.

Judges 13:3-5 – The angel of the Lord appeared to [the wife of Manoah] and said, "You are sterile and childless, but you are going to conceive and have a son. Now see to it that you drink no wine or other fermented drink and that you do not eat anything unclean, because you will conceive and give birth to a son [Samson]. No razor may be used on his head, because the boy is to be a Nazirite, set apart to God from birth, and he will begin the deliverance of Israel from the hands of the Philistines."

Prayer: When I see You working around me it is a mystery too deep for my mind to understand, a revelation too wonderful for my heart to hold. Who am I that You reveal Your will before me? Who am I that Your will includes me? Where shall Your will lead me, Oh my Lord? Only You know, and in You will I trust. Amen.

About the author:

Stephen Sutherland
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

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