Monday, February 24, 2014

Cannabis, Chapter Two

It’s been a little over six months since I, once again, chose to step out in faith by making the decision to support my daughter in the extremely challenging battle of trying to legalize medical cannabis for my granddaughter Anna. Anna suffers from intractable epilepsy, PDDNOS and several other conditions that do not respond to pharmaceuticals. (Our story can be found in an earlier post: Please Try on These Shoes...Our Families' Shoes.)  

At that time, Lolly and I were both in this for Anna’s sake, but soon we began to meet other families with children like Anna. We fell in love with other people’s sick kids. We began to care about other moms’ struggles and their daily challenges. 
We heard their stories. 
We watched their videos. 
We added their heartache and grieving to our own. 
We grew a new family. 

I began to pray for these other families and their struggles. Not surprisingly, I found myself with a “new” ministry. Blessing and encouraging and praying for these hurting families at every opportunity.  I have come to believe that, for some of them, I may be the only “pastor” they ever relate to (I trust the LORD will give me the love, wisdom, grace and mercy to be His light to moms and dads who wake up every morning wondering if their child will still be breathing or if they will live long enough to see the prohibition of cannabis ended and available for their babies.)  

Over the months we have continued to add others to our “new family” as we met more and more people with all kinds of diseases and conditions wanting the same thing we do...access to the medicinal properties of a plant. A plant. An herb that for thousands of years has been used for its medical benefits (until it was outlawed because of the greed of several wealthy, influential and infamous men in the 1940’s). A plant, that I believe with all my heart, was included in God’s proclamation in Genesis 1:29; “Then God said,  “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food."

(You may be interested-or not-to know that, if I am ever faced with the need to choose, say between traditional treatment of chemotherapy and radiation vs. medical cannabis, I would choose cannabis without hesitation. I am thoroughly convinced that its medicinal properties are extremely beneficial and amazing.)

During the last six months, I have NO IDEA how many of my Facebook friends have faithfully read my posts, watched the videos, studied the issue, followed along with us with support and prayers and encouragement and letters to your legislators. There have been many of you and I hope that I have let you know how much I appreciate your efforts on behalf of Anna, and the other children and adults who would benefit from medical cannabis.  You have been a rich blessing. 

On the other hand, I have also wondered how many people have simply chosen to "unfollow" me or ignore me… sorry, I tend to go there!

As well, there have been a handful...five to be exact, who have questioned my position in one way or another. It must be noted that each of their concerns stemmed from family members or friends who have or are currently “abusing marijuana.” (My first thought/response is always the same... “We are not even talking about the same thing!” But that is another topic altogether.)

One of these friends gave me some strong challenges which brought me to this place of pondering. 
So, I took her challenge and I asked the LORD to help me to see what I needed to see and how to answer her challenges with grace. 
It was only seconds before the picture began to unfold...
I’m standing on a hill looking out over all of creation and randomly picking out things that God created for His honor and glory and for the good of His people...
  • Music
  • Dance
  • Meditation
  • Motherhood
  • Marriage
  • A Plant
Immediately, I find myself grieving because every one of those things have, in a myriad of ways, been misused, abused, confused, tainted, destroyed and changed by people. These things that God created for good, men and women have turned into something that He did not intend because of sin. And, in the process, they justify themselves in whatever way they choose. 
I can’t begin to imagine how it grieves my Father, who gave us all good gifts.

Then I am even more grieved to realize that it’s not just “the random things.” It’s everything in all of God’s creation, everything touched by the sinful nature of man...everything. 

As I continue to ponder a word unscrambles itself in my mind. 
The word is REDEMPTION...”the action of saving or being saved from sin, error or evil.”
I’m so thankful for God’s redemptive plan in my life!
But there’s even more to REDEMPTION
It is also “the action of regaining or gaining possession of something in exchange for payment.”
It is synonymous with retrieval, recovery, reclamation, repossession.

So, I have come to the conclusion that REDEMPTION is the place this issue has brought me. Redeeming a God-given plant and restoring it to the place from which it should never have been removed in the first place. Reclaiming it for the good of mankind and little bitty babies.

I can’t stop people from “misusing it.” But I will do whatever I can to make sure that it is available to those who need it to live, to thrive, to see, to breathe, to walk without pain, to flourish. I will-for every man, woman and child who needs it. God gave it to us! 

I have no challenges in me at this moment, but let me encourage you….
  • First, if you have not read the studies, watched the videos, or understood or cared about anything I have posted over the last six months...
  • And if you have not taken the time to put yourself in our shoes...asking what you would do if your child or grandchild or another loved one could be helped by medical cannabis...
  • And if you still think I am wrong, then I am asking you to please just “unfriend” me. 
This is where I  believe God has brought me "for such a time as this."                                                                                                                                                           As for me, I am recommitting myself to ALL of God's redemptive purposes.