The Snoopy card I received from a friend encouraging me to write! Thank you to all for your encouragement and comments I have received!
As I sit at my new to me desk I ask what am I doing writing a blog? What do I write next?
Psalm 42:5 NIV “Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise Him, my Savior and my God.
Today I need that encouragement as I feel close to quitting! Tired from our Special Touch Ministry meeting last pm. Are we making a difference in the lives of my friends who attend? I am getting too old to do this, Lord send someone younger more qualified. Yes, I get discouraged! I just need to to quiet myself in His presence and hear His voice.
So today I encourage myself in the Lord asking myself, why do I love reaching out to people with disabilities. The Lord brought me back to where I was at in 1985 – broken over the burden of having 2 very medically needy children. He took me back to the memory of asking Him to take control of my life. I thought back to the sleep deprivation as their caregiver on duty 24 hrs a day. KEY to my healing was the meeting others at my first Special Touch Get Away in 1987 – they were doing what I was doing – caring for their own child. There was an instant bond with us – openly asking each other, “What’s wrong with your child.”
As a parent of special needs children, I experienced a lot of emotions besides anger and bitterness. There was denial that something was wrong. My 7-year-old daughter was falling frequently with seizures and having difficulties walking. I would carry her, not even thinking she should have a wheelchair – until a physical therapist suggested it.
I went through this with all the medical equipment that came into our home: suction machines, feeding pumps, hospital beds, oxygen, and Hoyer lifts…I struggled with admitting my children were sick.
Another emotion a parent feels is guilt. As a mother, I relived my pregnancy over and over. I wondered, Did I cause this? Was I guilty of passing on a bad gene?
Parents may feel totally hopeless and depressed. Nobody dreams of having a disabled child, and as a parent you grieve the loss of that child you dreamed about. Feelings of rejection are also common as people just don’t know what to say to you so you get left out. What’s more, you also suffer from the loss of control and privacy. I had no choice but to share the care of my children with others when it got too difficult.
A great understatement is parents of special needs children need support. There are incredible time demands, emotional stress, and financial stresses are just a few of the complications that contribute to a very high divorce rate.
The love, acceptance, and support my children and I received through Special Touch brought emotional healing into my life. If only this could continue all year long, I thought. Not just for me, but for many I knew who were hurting. Healing for me was seeing my children loved and accepted. Also, more healing came as I looked past my own need and reached out to others in my community affected by disabilities – the start of a Special Touch – Chapter! Seldom does anyone in the group have the same circumstances, but we all agree that this is not what we dream for our child’s life or our life, and look to the Lord for His strength. My Mom would always say, “You don’t have to look far to see others worse off then you”.
COMFORT OR COMFORTERS?
I have found as we minister out of our need, our needs are met. I also learned the Lord does not comfort us to make us comfortable, but to make us comforters. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 (NIV) “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.”
We have a mandate from God, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them…and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.’ Matthew 28:19 (NIV)
We as Christians can do better! The Lord has shown me through children and the disease they had how important it is that everything works properly in the body. My children had Niemann Pick Disease and couldn’t metabolize cholesterol. A simple error of metabolism caused them caused great devastation in their bodies.
1 Corinthians 12:26 “If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; If one part is honored every part rejoices with it.”
Is the body of Christ suffering if we are not reaching out to and including people with disabilities? I believe the Body is not functioning the way the Lord desires if we do not allow those with disabilities to be involved in our churches. We need not only minister to those with disabilities, but give them opportunity to become all they can be in the body of Christ.
Romans 11:29 NIV “God does not take back His gifts. He does not change His mind about those He has chosen.”
But, Lord this is hard there are difficult people!… Oh yeah; that person is in a difficult situation, that person is in pain, that person has been rejected, that person has painful memories, that person doesn’t think like me. On and on…..
The Lord had my attention and then this song confirmed His call to me.
But I found strength in the Lord! What God has done for me -He can do for them! Bring on the next meeting, Lord! My love tank is full! Bring on the challenges those meetings bring; the things that don’t go as planned. Bring in the halt and the lame so that they may know You, Lord!
Where are you on your journey with the Lord? What do you enjoy doing for Him? Do you recognize that as a calling from the Lord?
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