Stephanie O. Hubach
Reviewed by: George and Donna Hammond
Parenting and Disabilities: Abiding in God’s Presence, by Stephanie O. Hubach. P&R, 2021. Paperback, 96 pages, $7.50. Reviewed by OP members George and Donna Hammond.
Being the parent of a child with disabilities can be lonely. Aside from the social isolation from others (sometimes due to being overlooked or deliberately excluded, sometimes circumstantially unavoidable), there is a sense of isolation that comes from the fact that few people outside the family understand what day-to-day life is like. Having raised a son with Down syndrome, Hubach knows from experience the situation of such parents, and this one-month (thirty-one entries) devotional is written to help them. It is not a “one-and-done” work, but a guide to which parents of children with disabilities can return again and again for encouragement.
The book is arranged under eight headings: The Gift of Unearned Value in God’s Image; The Gift of the Unwavering Faithfulness of God; the Gift of an Undeserved Substitute in Christ; The Gift of One who Understands Our Sufferings; The Gift of Undoing Our Old Nature through the Spirit; The Gift of Union with Christ; The Gift of an Unfailing Advocate in Jesus; and The Gift of Unending Dwelling with our Triune God. Beginning with a Scripture passage, each short, daily devotional thought (limited to two pages) contains rich biblical insights and practical applications to strengthen, encourage, and comfort parents who walk this often difficult road.
Who would benefit from using this devotional guide? Certainly, moms and dads of children who have disabling conditions. The book would also help pastors, elders, deacons, and church members who have families with disabilities in their midst better understand some of the struggles such families go through. Finally, everyone would benefit from this book. Good theology is not proprietary to one subgroup of people. While a particular situation may help focus attention on overlooked aspects and applications of God’s Word, we are all much more alike than we are different. While the insights and principles of this excellent book are particularly helpful to parents of children with disabilities, they are also applicable and uplifting to anyone who encounters suffering in life (in other words, everyone).
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