For a child with autism, Asperger's or obsessive-compulsive disorder, fear is a formidable foe. The child often encounters it in a significantly overbearing and overwhelming way. I recall waking up as a child, engulfed by fear. My heart raced, consumed by it.
However, the mornings and days notably changed once I had accepted Jesus into my life and heart. From that day forward, I sensed a tangible presence at my side and an arm that enveloped and comforted me. Because of this, my heart immediately calmed down and stopped racing. When the peace of God came over me, I knew, in my spirit, I had no need to worry about anything.
In many instances in the Old Testament, the major prophets referred to the powerful arm of God. Isaiah understood that without prayer to the Almighty God there was no deliverance, and he prayed from his heart, "O Lord, be gracious to us; we wait for you. Be our arm every morning, our salvation in the time of trouble" (Isa. 33:2, ESV). An arm represents strength and protection, suggesting no one can stand against us when God's arm is around us.
Mornings can be challenging for any child, especially one diagnosed on the spectrum. Even though I had accepted Jesus into my life, the healing of autism, Asperger's and obsessive-compulsive disorder happened progressively. This meant there were seasons when mornings would prove to be a "time of trouble." Fear turned to panic at the very thought of the day ahead—such as my performance at school, the reactions, the people and so forth.
It was only because of the precious Word of God and the tangible presence of the Spirit of God in my life that things started to turn around. Over time, the fear subsided; the anxiety left; and my heart stopped racing. Even now, when times are extremely stressful, and because of the heavy nature of spiritual warfare, the Spirit of God will come and put His arm around me. He calms my spirit and reassures me.
David longed to see the power and glory of God (see Ps. 63:2) from the dry and weary land he was in, and he set his heart to seek God early, proclaiming, "O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you" (Ps. 63:1a). When we press into God, seeking Him in our "time of trouble," "It will be said on that day, 'Behold, this is our God; we have waited for him, that he might save us. This is the Lord; we have waited for him; let us be glad and rejoice in his salvation'" (Isa. 25:9).
Every day we receive testimonies from parents all around the world. A mother recently sent this short yet powerful praise report: "My daughter used to have severe meltdowns in school. Since you prayed, her behavior has improved dramatically; she has had no meltdowns since she started school this year. Her reading has also improved a lot! She has also told her half-sister about Jesus through a book she took to their house."
When you call on God, He will put His arm around your child to bring comfort and reassurance. There may be times when it feels as though there is no one who will stand with you in prayer for your child. But I encourage you to keep believing in what God is going to do for you and your family. The Bible says, "He saw there was no man and wondered that there was no one to intercede; then his own arm brought him salvation, and his righteousness upheld him" (Isa. 59:16).
God is doing a mighty work through the Autism Overturned podcast and private Facebook community.
You are welcome to join the group, "Autism Overturned," and post a picture of your child. I will start to pray. Once you have joined the group, let me know if you would like a free prayer cloth to place in your child's pillowcase. Furthermore, check out my Autism Overturned podcast on the Charisma Podcast Network.
Reg Morais is the senior pastor of Living Faith Community Church, launched from Anoint the World Ministries, which he founded 15 years prior. Each week he runs seven services, reaching a global audience through social media platforms. Learn more about him and his ministry at regmorais.com.
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