Why Pain and Suffering?

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Girl with Hurt Finger

Does God Care About the Pain of a Handicapped Child and his Parents?
Chet McDoniel and his parents believe God cares.

... the obstetrician looked at me and gave a pained look. ... The doctor laid Chet on Judy's stomach and announced softly, "Now, Judy what we have here are some congenital anomalies." I leaned down next to her ear and told her plainly as much as I could about Chet's appearance. I told her that our baby boy, had no arm on the right side, a short stub on the left, and short legs as if the thigh section was missing.

Since we gave birth to a limb deficient child, several people have wanted to talk to us about their suffering. Life's difficulties are so individualized that few people face a situation identical to that of another. Even if the situations look alike to observers, the relationships of the people involved and the strengths of those who are suffering make all people face suffering and sorrow as if it is peculiar to them. Yet, a commonality and kinship exists between most of us who have faced life's cruel blows; and for that reason, people have wanted to hear about Chet, our son, and how we are facing life. Upon hearing of our experience, some have indicated that they were encouraged in their own struggles. I have chosen to write to help others, and maybe, to help us.

On a few occasions, Judy and I have tried to tell an audience some of the pain and disappointment we felt at the birth of a handicapped child. While we have been willing to share our experience, we have been reluctant to share too much. We feel that the message of pain can become too painful for an audience, and that listeners can get lost in just hurting rather than hearing a message of hope. While we still speak about our feelings at the time of birth, we try not to take hearers too far into that pain, and we hope that the first chapter in this book simply informs readers of our situation. We have talked about the different subjects that will be covered, and Judy's thoughts are interwoven with mine throughout the book.

Most people who have had a relationship with Chet feel that he has blessed their lives. He is happy and productive because of our gracious God's blessings. Chet lives his life to the glory of God. We pray that this book will help others who face difficulties live to the glory of God also.

Chet at Age 25 with wife Joni Chet at age 25 with wife Joni

(...read more by Jim McDoniel)

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All He Needs for Heaven Chapters 1 & 2

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