I thought that I was cursed. No, really. I actually thought that there was some sort of curse on me when our medical clearance was revoked and we were told that we couldn't go overseas. I've never been very "lucky", except when it comes to the quality of my family members. I know that there's no such thing as luck, but it seemed to me that there had to be some sort of Old Testament curse on me and the children God has graciously given me. Our path was blessed with our incredible home and church, and everything seemed awesome. Then Ella got lead poisoning. Which I then took as confirmation of the Hannah Curse. Obviously, the fruit of my womb had to be dealing with the repercussions of some sin in my past or one of our ancestor's past, right? My logic is faulty at best, but whenever I allow myself to go there, a curse seems to be the only "possible" explanation.
As I went for my exceptionally long Sunday walk today, I asked God about my curse theory. He didn't reply verbally, but He brought to my mind a certain passage that is probably familiar to many of you:
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:37-39 ESV)
Then, as is my Father's way, He reminded me of the context:
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? 36 As it is written, "For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered." (Romans 8:35-36 ESV)
And this is where He got personal. He spoke softly, but, let me assure you, it was clear. "You know, you have to go to battle to be a conqueror." It's true. If you want victory, you're going to have to fight. In order to fight, there has to be an enemy. Bad stuff has to happen if you're going to be "more than a conqueror".
And let me tell you, we are receiving victory after victory at the Attaway household. As I mentioned previously, we have been given a ministry stateside that we could have never imagined, and would have never been able to fulfill without the training we received for mission work. DeLaynie has made grand strides in development. We're raising the bar for her constantly, and she continues to surpass our expectations. She ate an actual pork chop the other night and even ate a little corn willingly. She sat right next to me in "big church" today, and my hair didn't turn gray or anything. She understood exactly what I meant when I said that she needed to be a big girl while we listened to that good looking pastor. She explained to Edwin the other night that when she was unkind to Ella, what she was really doing was "disobeying God's Word". Although her fine motor skills are still lacking, she is making great progress, and we are looking forward to DeLaynie beginning kindergarten next year, mainstreamed (but still receiving speech and occupational therapy as often as needed). Ella and lead? She has yet to display a single symptom, and her blood lead levels were considered acceptable the last time we had her tested.
There are always more battles ahead. That's the way of it. My daughters are both too young to know the Lord, but their parents are more than happy to wield swords on their behalves. While they have yet to join the army, we are amply supplied, completely armed, and ready to take on any foe through the power at work in us. That's what conquerors do, and we know that our King has a perfect battle plan. No matter the cost, His glory, His fame, His majesty, His recognition, they are worth it.