Today tears caught up with the Huebert home.

I’d sent Noah, our oldest, upstairs to shower before his inner city “mission trip” here in Calgary. If you’ve been following my posts, he’s currently recovering from a spiral fracture of his tibia and fibia below his right knee and is casted from crotch to big toe. I’ve been duct taping his cast up with black garbage bags to keep water from running down his leg during showers, so I was preparing to go upstairs and do that when I heard him crying.

No, sobbing. I found him sitting on the toilet seat, head in his hands, raining tears.

See, he didn’t really want to go on this mission trip. I mean, he wanted to go before his accident, but crutching his way through life has put a real damper on his mobility, so he’s been thinking that he won’t enjoy the trip if we make him go.

As I kissed his hair and embraced him, I realized that it’s been two weeks since his leg snapped like a pencil and he’s only cried because of the physical pain. He hadn’t yet cried out the confusion, the anger, the regret, the questions, the cumulative frustration.

“I’m useless, I’m totally useless. I can’t do anything,” he cried. Oh, that hurts. Any dad with a pulse would be pierced by those words.

“You still have your voice, your creativity, your writing, your art, your heart, your mind,” I said, holding him tight. “You’re still Noah.” Which is true, but I think he needed to cry. Hard.

After his shower, I called Shauna (who was out for the evening with Glory, our daughter). My intention was to ask her to pray for Noah, and I did…

And then my own emotions stomped up my throat and burst through my face. Cause here’s my thing: The last time I pressed Noah to do something he didn’t want to do, he broke his leg. Yeah. I told him he ought to play football that Sunday even though we don’t usually condone that, told him he should take that opportunity to play in McMahon Stadium even though he was scheduled to help out with Kidz Church that morning, told him we’d take care of that, that this was a once in a lifetime opportunity.

And here we were again, pressing him to go on this trip because we think it will be good for him, believe he will need it. But the fear grabbed my heart and pressed its claws into my chest and BOOM! Out came the tears.

I didn’t give in to the fear, but it was real nonetheless. It was a faith moment for Noah and I—Noah had to believe that God had something for him on this trip even though he feels useless. I had to realize that I can’t protect Noah from life, and that he’s not destined to be a bubble boy, insulated from all pain and suffering.

Shauna apologized for “not being there for me” tonight. I told her that it had to be this way. That if she’d been home, I probably wouldn’t have blown my tear gasket, which I needed to do. Wouldn’t have felt so insecure, which I needed to feel. Opportunities to truly walk by faith are gifts from God that we should never treat lightly.