What did Christ mean when He said what you did for the least of these brothers and sisters, you did for Me – and what you did not do for them, you did not do for Me? (Paraphrase of Matthew 25:40-46) A friend posted a photo album of what such doing looks like over three years, and I hope you will take the time and review it – it’s about 12 minutes of your time. (One child’s journey) In this album, this wee lad’s ebullience and the compassion of those who served him show a definition of serving the least of Christ’s brothers and sisters that is invaluable.
On the calendar of all the kinds of people we honor, is there a day for those who help the young children with significant impairments gain their independence? Is there day when we say to the kids who work so hard to gain the skills they need to be a part of this wonderful world – WOW! Look what you did! Is there also a day set aside when we celebrate the moms and dads, siblings and grandparents of these special children who cheered their precious gifts on, exhorting and comforting them?
Is there time in my day to pray, or time in schedule to serve?
This piece was written by a sister of a young man who is an overcomer.
Precious Giftby Cheryl MullisGod has given me a brother who is very special. His name is Matthew and he was born with Down's Syndrome. Matthew is now thirty years old. God has brought a richness and fullness to my life through those thirty years of living life alongside Matthew. I hope to bring encouragement to those of you who may be living life alongside someone who may have special needs. Matthew has been a PRECIOUS GIFT to our family, sent directly to us by God.Precious GiftPositive Parents
gaining daily strength from a visible, daily walk with the Lord
believing that my sibling is a true blessing
focusing on the positive/refusing to be trampled by the insurmountable obstacles
communicating love and acceptance to each child
discussing openly the realities of living day to day life with a special child
God is our refuge and strength, our ever present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear. (Psalm 46:1 )Rejoicing
in the unique family in which God has placed me
in the differences my sibling has
in the ways that God shows me how precious each one of us is to Him
Rejoice in the Lord ALWAYS and again I say REJOICE. (Philippians 4:4-7 )
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Your works are wonderful, O Lord. (Psalm 139:4 )Energy
to face day to day living
to keep up
Because of the Lord's great love, we are not consumed. For his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness, O Lord. (Lamentations 3:22, 23)Confusion
why has God "blessed" our family in this way?
will my sibling ever be able to . . .?
will my friends understand? will they accept me?
why do my parents have to spend so much time with him?
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thatksgiving present your requests to God. And the PEACE of God which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and minds In Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6,7)Insults
hard to talk about
Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing. (Proverbs 12:18)Opportunities
to meet others in similar places in life
to serve in the church and community
to become aware of the special qualities and gifts of othersUnaccepted
people avoiding youSurprises
never know what to expect
private family issues being made public
life is not "controllable"
people who God uses to encourage you
God's grace IS sufficient
My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.(2 Corinthians 12:9 )Gift from God
remembering that each life is a gift from God - even your sister or brotherspecialuniqueprecious
For you have created my inmost being, you knit me together in my mother's womb. (Psalm 139:13)Intense
intense times of frustrationintense times of embarrassmentintensely personal situationintense times of confusionintense times of JOYFun
keep a sense of humorremember to laughTrust
in God's plan - unknown to usin God's strength to carry on day to dayEncouragement from Habakkuk to God's people --Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vine, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, YET, I will REJOICE in the Lord. I will be joyful in God my savior. The sovereign Lord is my strength, he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to go on to the heights. (Habakkuk 3:17-18)
Another great resource: