After writing his first post titled Fatherhood, Steve felt led to continue the conversation.
As I continue to reflect on my friend Joel from Bolivia, who was born with severe permanent disabilities, I am stirred by an expanding respect and even love for Joel’s parents. Even though I only met his Mom briefly on a site visit in a local child development center supported by World Vision, she is impacting me today.
What stirs me is the requirement of endurance and steadfast love to care for a disabled child. The parents of a special needs child, upon reflection, are some of the most dedicated, committed, and selfless people I can think of. It stirs and inspires me as I dwell on this.
Think about it:
· Quite possibly the same routine, every day, for a life time
· The setting aside of personal freedoms and independence quite possibly for a life time
· The requirement to serve every day in the most back stage out of sight ways – for a life time…
Yet they are faithful.
Then I think about who I cheer for and give encouragement to. I cheer on the quarterback of the local team, or the lead actress in the musical. I cheer on the artist or musician who stuns me with their gifts and talents. I congratulate the parents of the valedictorian for their accomplishments in raising a stellar student. Now to be clear, these are all good and worthy of support. What eats at me is that I have not cheered as enthusiastically for the parents of the child with disabilities who are serving with endless dedication for the well-being of that special child. For these too I should and must raise my voice.
I am convicted that when I meet or happen across these incredible children and their inspiring parents it will be my privilege to call out in them the profound nature of their faithfulness. I am learning that faithfulness is one the most admirable character traits, yet incredibly difficult to achieve. Faithfulness, when it is displayed, as with so many parents serving special needs children, it is over looked or under appreciated. Faithfulness is such a powerful attribute and so incredibly difficult to accomplish.
Think about it:
· It requires that I execute the mundane and routine as unto the Lord… every day for a life time
· It requires that I set aside the pursuit of independence to be dependent on God and His will for me…every day for a life time
· It requires that I may need to serve in the most back stage out of sight ways, out of love for Jesus…every day for a life time
These parents are motived by a powerful love that compels them to serve. They faithfully serve, and serve and serve. They are doing what I am called to do – Wake Up – Serve – Repeat.
To the amazingly faithful parents of special needs children, I can say, “Well done good and faithful servant”. I will cheer on the faithful servant in them that is such an example to me.
May each of us run in such a way that we hear the cheer of our Lord and Savior, even now in the daily routine of service, “Well done good and faithful servant”. This life we lead as followers of the Christ is hard, yet may we be found faithful.
SVP, HR & Organizational Development at Family Christian