I have three major inspirations for this post.
The other day I was grocery shopping with Ethan and we came across a beautiful mom and her beautiful son. I would guess he was 11 but his behavior appeared to be more like someone who was 4. I was in complete awe of her patience with him, her joyful nature and her ability to genuinely be in the moment with her son while he was making friends with Ethan and observing the colorful fish in the fish tanks.
There is a young man at my church who has captivated my attention over the last few Sundays. I sing on the worship team and at the end of the last service he always comes and stands right in front of us just below the stage and dances and lifts his hands in praise as if no one is watching. If only we could all have this kind of faith. (Luke 18:17)
I have a good friend who is a mother of three precious girls. One of her daughters, whose smile will light up a room, has special needs. This woman's grace, honesty, unconditional love and faith in God's plan have been an incredible inspiration to me. Check out her blog here.
Dear Mom/Dad of a Special Needs Child,
I used to watch you with your child and feel so sorry for you. I would think about the overflowing patience you surely had to muster up every day. I would wonder how you kept a smile on your face knowing that your child might have many difficult days ahead of them. I would wonder if you were mad at God and felt alone or far away from him.
I could not have been more wrong. I now see you in a completely different light. I find myself envying your ability to be completely present in every moment with your child. Just watching you fully enjoy your child, this gift from God, fills my heart and soul with so much joy I can barely contain it. It is truly contagious. You make me want to be a better mom. You make me want to be more present, more patient, more kind, more loving, more Christ-like.
I want you to know that I see you as one of Christ's strongest soldiers. I see you as someone God has specifically chosen for this incredible responsibility and privilege of raising a child to show the world God's love. And I want you to know that I see your child as a beautiful, fearfully and wonderfully made creation of God. I see your child as the epitome of agape. My prayer is that my boys see your children the same way and learn lessons from them that I could never teach them on my own.
Thank you. Thank you for all you have taught me and all you are teaching this world. On the days where you feel you are lacking patience or strength or courage know that you are still an inspiration to someone, even in those most difficult moments.
Just Another Mom
Here is a verse I wanted to share.
"As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth. And his disciples asked him, "Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?" Jesus answered, "It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him." ~John 9:1-3
My friend's blog I shared above is appropriately titled Psalm 139 (one of my favorites). I wanted to share part of that with you now:
For you formed my inward parts;
you knitted me together in my mother's womb.
I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
my soul knows it very well.
My frame was not hidden from you,
when I was being made in secret,
intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed substance;
in your book were written, every one of them,
the days that were formed for me,
when as yet there was none of them.