Many are the plans in a person's heart, but it is the Lord's purpose that prevails.
Designed by God was birthed out of my own testimony of having an exceptional child and my desire to encourage parents to live their purpose filled life during their exceptional journey.
When our daughter, Brittney, was diagnosed with a chromosome deletion, such diagnosis was relatively new. The geneticist said that they just learned of her type of genetic disorder and that a lot of children were being misdiagnosed. Okay, so now what? I went home and started researching. The internet was still relatively new (dial up was still the thing) so you pretty much had to know what you were looking for. I researched and learned as much as I could. At the time, the closest support group was in South Carolina and the practicability of attending was slim to none. What I learned were her characteristics and where to spend our time and resources. Many of the attributes she exhibited, and still exhibits, closely related to Autism, hence her second diagnosis. Through researching and understanding her disorder, I have been able to inform and educate her doctors, teachers and other professionals. I regularly gave them updates and played a vital role in her education and care.
One of the characteristics of Brittney’s diagnosis is absent to severely delayed speech. Most who knows me, know that I am a true optimist. I believe there is a silver lining in every cloud and there is nothing too hard for Jesus. So, you know I dismissed the word absent and put my belief into the severely delayed speech. Before having a seizure at the age of two she would say simple words – ‘Go’ and ‘Eat’ were her first two words. After, the seizure she lost her words. Or, it seemed. Later, when she was entering middle school, she began to say, “I Love You”. This baffled the speech therapists. The therapists said those words were classified as difficult words to say. Didn’t matter, God once again proved that what man deems impossible, is possible for God (Luke 18:27). I rejoiced - calling grandparents and anybody else I could think of. Now, she responds verbally when asked questions. For example, if asked do you need to go to the bathroom? If the answer is yes, she’ll grunt huh and then go to the bathroom. Her efforts to communicate verbally is still growing. While preparing for a group meeting she began to babble with inflection and tone, expressing herself. I respond as if I know what she is saying and we both start laughing. I believe that because I rest my hope in delayed, but not denied - her verbal ability will continue to grow.
2 Timothy 2:15 (KJV) states: Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. What I have learned over the years is that because of my study of our daughter’s diagnosis I have been able to better advocate for her needs and wants. I am not ashamed to educate and inform the professionals. They are still baffled by my daughter, not just in the area of speech, but her overall well-being. When the professionals mention this, I just respond, ‘but Jesus’.
In dealing with life designed by God. I have learned to Acknowledge that my life is designed by God for an exceptional purpose. With such acknowledgment, I Believe that all things are possible with God and I should pray and seek God’s wisdom and get understanding. Last, through faith, I can Conquer challenges set before me and that all things are possible through Jesus Christ.
"You are Designed by God not to blend in, but to stand out."
To empower parents of exceptional children in acknowledging, believing and conquering the purposed filled challenges set before them.
Helping parents understand and conquer challenges faced with having an exceptional child.