When Sarah was first diagnosed with autism, I didn’t handle it well. I was in a panic to find answers. I desperately wanted to “fix” my daughter. In our desperation to find answers we had Sarah undergo many tests. One of these tests was to see where she was developmentally.
I will never forget walking into the room to go over Sarah’s results. It was a preschool room with a half moon shaped table in the far corner. David and I were asked to sit in the little preschool chairs at this table. The psychologist sat on the other side in the teacher’s chair. It was a sight to see David sitting in that little chair with his knees to his chest! 🙂 As the psychologist went over the results, she showed us a graph with many boxes. Some boxes were filled in, but most were not.
“This is a chart to show the development growth in children. These are foundational blocks that build upon each other…” said the psychologist.
I quickly looked over the chart and realized that Sarah had very few boxes filled in. My heart sank. “She is that far behind?” I wondered. My mind raced as I tried to figure out what this chart meant. As the psychologist continued about Sarah’s results, I couldn’t handle it any longer and I blurted out.
“But will she learn to talk again?”
I can’t believe I interrupted her! David, who was studying the chart intently, looked up at me startled. It was so rude of me, but I thought I was about to lose it. David sensing this reached over and put his hand on my knee.
The psychologist stopped and looked at me and took a breath. I think she realized she better skip ahead and just let me know.
“Here,” She took her pen and drew a line across the chart. “This is when verbal language usually appears.”
I gasped. The line was far above any of the boxes filled. Developmentally, Sarah at age 3 wasn’t even close!
“There are many factors that go into verbal language. For example, typically, children need to be able to recognize 50 items receptively before verbal words are spoken. Once these boxes, these building blocks, below this line on the graph are filled in, language will come. Our job here is to help you systematically fill in these holes.”
I looked at David; we knew we had our work cut out for us, but I also felt that the Lord had directed us to a place that gave us a plan.
I think back about that chart. I think about how it can relate to my own spiritual walk; how it is important to have firm foundation and to build up from that. If I want to be spiritually at some level, then I better have firmed up and filled in “the foundational building blocks” below!
Thankfully, the Lord knows where “my holes” are at. Even better, Jesus is with me to help me by teaching and equipping me as we fill them in. He wants me to have a firm foundation to be ready for what lies ahead. There are days when I feel we have our work cut out for us, but I am so grateful He directs me and He has a perfect plan!
“…a precious cornerstone for a sure foundation; the one who trusts will never be dismayed.” Isaiah 28:16