June 7, 2018 is going to be a special day


I have fought the demons of my own dark night

Finding only shadows in the dawning light

From the song “Time for You” on the album “Casual Crimes” by John Fischer

This is a big week in the Fischer household. On Thursday we will witness what many thought was not possible: Our youngest son, Chandler, will be graduating from Fusion Academy with a high school diploma and a 3.5 GPA. There have been professionals who have told us at one point that Chandler would never be able to read. We have watched him defy that and many other proclamations made on his behalf that predicted sadder outcomes than the one we celebrate this week.

Chandler has made his own way. We have not always supported all of his choices but we have been there for him the whole way, as have many of you. You followed us to Wyoming for 10 months of treatment and family therapy. You followed us home for the difficult adjustments necessary to keep him on a track to complete this important stage of his life. You have prayed for him, and us, and have contributed to our needs. We feel like you should share in this accomplishment as well.

Chandler has always fought his own demons. He is aware of spiritual warfare like few others I know. He has an intuitive sense of God in his life and he feels the burden of the conflicts we bear in this human existence. Sometimes I wish he were less aware of that, because it has meant he has grown up carrying a weight way beyond his years. We don’t know the extent of what he fights every day, but we know the battle goes on. I often wish I could lighten his load, but I am not in charge of that.

However, yesterday morning our daughter, Anne, lightened the load for all of us. She surprised us by showing up from her home in Hawaii on a plane that landed at 6:30 a.m.. When she walked in the house, her mother was overcome with joy. With our oldest son, Christopher, going into surgery on the day of Chandler’s graduation for a broken collarbone and unable to attend the ceremony, her presence has taken on huge significance. “You don’t think I would miss my baby brother’s graduation do you?” she texted me yesterday morning, as she revealed her plan to me to keep a secret from Marti. It was so much fun. I’ve never seen Marti more overwhelmed with joy.

Today’s Catch goes out with a big Thank You to all of you who have shown an interest in Chandler along the way. I wish you all could be there. You should be; you are a part of this.

Chandler is not one for celebration. He distrusts fluff of any kind. Hyperbole does not suit him. He greeted his sister’s surprise arrival with a certain amount of disinterest. He acted like he knew she would be here. He probably did; that would suit his inside track with God. He and his sister share a special relationship. We are so glad she is here.

Chandler lives in a very real world with a certain amount of pain I wish I knew how to relieve. Pray for a lifting of the shadows this week, and the breakthrough of a dawning light.

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13 Responses to June 7, 2018 is going to be a special day

  1. Lisa in Sunland says:

    Would like to hoot, holler and do a few back flips, but in view of Chandler’s distaste for celebration will settle for thanking God, and for Chandler a simple “Right on, Dude.” Blessings on y’all!

  2. Marylyn J Yoder says:

    “Open wide the eyes of my soul that I may see good in all things.” Congratulations to the entire Fischer family. As one who works in an alternative school, grades 3-12, I know firsthand of how it takes a village to raise up a child.

  3. Mark D Seguin says:

    Way to go, Chandler!!!!

  4. How Awesome! Here’s to surprises and celebrations!
    Congratulations to Chandler, and thanks to our LORD for all that he has done in the life of your family!🎶🎶🎶🎉🎉🎉🎈🎈💐💐

  5. peter leenheer says:

    What an incredible story. It is meant to be put in a book so the rest of the world could benefit from seeing first hand what is possible with God. Wow!!! Perhaps at the end of his life.
    You mention the burden that Chandler feels for this world. Could it be that God is making him aware of the need out there, so that his God given assignment may be directed that way. It also seems to me that this burden is for God to bear, and for Chandler to simply be aware. The awareness includes realizing that nothing is impossible with God. So it is my prayer that Chandler will go ‘with God’, and leave the burden for God to deal with as he (Chandler) serves to ameliorate the needs of the world, and works where he sees that God is busy. Jesus always went where his Father was working.

  6. dierama says:

    John, I am very touched by your words. Yes, I have prayed for Chandler. At the moment I am paying cash to a young man who has been labeled as disabled to get work done for me. His appreciation and faith is amazing. He is probably your son’s age and I have not heard whether he has yet graduated from HS but he is very intelligent, he just struggles with our educational system and ways of learning. He loves God as well.

  7. Carole Oglesbee says:

    It’s been said that it’s a good thing to march to the beat of a different drummer. But maybe the key is marching differently to the beat of the SAME Drummer… we know that He will complete the good work He’s begun in you, Chandler. Kudos!

  8. Gary says:

    What a Kodak moment. Witnessing your Loving wife doing this dance of Joy had to be remarkable. I don’t believe Marti to be a violent person, but your shinbone might have been considered a target (John). Would have been cool that someone had a cellphone camera, so the fun of seeing it might be recorded. Just saying. Good Work Chandler, be thankful for a beautiful God loving Family!! Keep your eyes on the Path before you.

  9. Sandie says:

    I have found that what we gain through adversity, we hold in great value. We fight to keep it – and ourselves – true and honest. For reasons we can’t fathom, God has laid a heavy mantle on Chandler’s shoulders at an early age. He sees and knows things we only see a shadow of, and has to wrestle against his desire to have God just leave him alone and go away, and the knowledge that he has to face into the wind and follow where God leads. I know, because I have been blessed (and sometimes it seems cursed) by the same kind of burden. Blessed because God chose me to see the vision – cursed because I will forever be responsible for it. All we can do is what is in front of us – the rest is God’s domain. I pray wisdom for Chandler – and peace in his heart that Jesus is forever faithful – even when we are not. Blessings to your whole family as you share this glorious triumph – Satan was robbed of victory – Hallelujah!
    Ecclesiastes 9:10
    Phillipians 1:6

  10. peter leenheer says:

    Sandie, God puts a burden on our hearts. If it is because of our sin, we need to repent, but if it is to make us aware of where he desires us to serve, that is a different matter altogether. We are responsible for the first burden until we give it to Christ, the second one is not our responsibility but it is an awareness. If we take that burden for us to bear, what is the point of Jesus Christ?

    • Sandie says:

      Peter, I’m not sure what you are saying. I know the burden is bearable only when I welcome Jesus into the situation(s). I know He tells us to cast our burdens on Him – but He also invites us to pick up His burden. I also know that the bigger the gift, the bigger the discernment, the bigger the vision…it follows the bigger the responsibility. Jesus said, “To him who has been given much, much is required.” It is my old nature that recoils from the responsibility. And so there are times when I try to lose the burden or hide from it. Dealing with our old nature is something we all will wrestle with until the day we see Jesus face-to-face. That’s why Phillipians 1:6 is one of my life verses…it is not my responsibility to perfect the work…it is His. And He is faithful and promises not to leave me or lose me, so I pick up my cross and follow where He leads, stumbling all the while. But that’s okay…because He is with me…always.

  11. peter leenheer says:

    My point was that I see a lot of young people in my church feeling such a burden and they do any thing imaginable in ministries to alleviate that burden. They often get ahead of God. I have a burden to bring the gospel to children, but it wasn’t until God prepared me through various circumstances, schooling and life preparation that He could use me to responsibly, with Him at work through me. I had to wait a considerable time until God felt I was ready. I felt I was ready long before that and made a mess of a few things.

    Sometimes people get depressed at the state of the world around them, and once they focus on where God is busy they don’t take on it on by themselves because then the burden takes you down. The story of Moses killing the Egyptian is the best example I can think of, of someone having a burden for his people but getting ahead of God. The burden is not to be avoided or the pain not felt. We just should not bear it all ourselves. Tell me if that helps.

    • Sandie says:

      What you are seeing in young people is something I am guilty of – seeing a real need for ministry and instead of seeking God’s wisdom and leading, I rush headlong, dragging Him along as an afterthought. “Oh God will surely bless this because my heart is in the right place”…too bad my head wasn’t where it should be. It’s taken me many long miles and hard-learned wisdom to slow down and wait for His timing.
      Here’s an example from my own life: My husband and I are both musically trained from our teens, though in different areas. We thought we were mature enough to handle a music ministry – especially after a word of prophecy was preached over us saying that we would serve Him that way. We rushed headlong, recruited a few people, and went….nowhere. It was almost 10 years later that we finally walked on stage and picked up mics and instruments. We had a lot of living, listening and learning to do.
      In fact, the impetus for my music ministry was driven by my experience working with teens at risk. In later years, we were part of a motorcycle ministry that sought out outlaw bikers. Between the teens and bikers, I walked into places most believers avoid; heard things I can’t un-hear, saw things I can’t un-see. I joke and say my gray hairs have names! In many ways though, they ministered to me more than I ministered to them.
      God bless you for working with youth. A thought from my experience – let them come to you; they’ll tell you what they need – and God will tell you how to meet the need, and where and when. Sometimes it’s a crisis and immediate – other times (most times) it’s a process. They need to know that no matter how bad they are, how much they reject you – you are in it for the long haul. That’s the greatest Gospel we can give them – ourselves.

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