Saturday, June 27, 2009

Thank God for the "Ordinary Joe"!

Instead, God chose things the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise. And he chose things that are powerless to shame those who are powerful. (1 Corinthians 1:27, NLT)

The other day, while reading from the Book of Acts, it occurred to me how wild it must have been to hear a guy like Peter, an "ordinary Joe", a fisherman, address a crowd with authority and wisdom. That would be like having a garbage man in today's culture give an inaugural address! Yet, God filled Peter with His Holy Spirit and used Him to bring thousands into a saving relationship with Jesus Christ.

As I pondered this further, today's Scripture popped into my head. What infinite purpose God gives each human life, even if we're "ordinary", "young", "weak" or "poor". He can work much more easily with a person who realizes their limitations than with a "know-it-all". And those of us living with the daily challenges of raising a child with a special need KNOW we are imperfect creatures!

In fact, we might even sell ourselves short at times. When a disability or chronic condition rudely decides to have a season of taking center stage, we might wonder what good can possibly come from these trials. What purpose do we serve? The doctors can make us all feel so ignorant or foolish at times like these. We try to regain our confidence and raise our children to believe that they have something to offer the world.

It's at times like these when God can shine His light through us in powerful ways. Little Sam, a precious boy just adopted from Africa suffered a tragic accident. One day, after a stretch of time when his mom was worn down from the results of repeated ostomy failures, endlessly doing laundry and bathing him, God spoke. Sam shared with his mom, "When I have accident -- I touch God's hand and feel better. I say 'Thank you God'." Talk about God revealing Himself through the simple and confounding the wise! Many lives were tremendously touched by Sam's mom sharing that story -- more so than the bloviating wisdom of scholarly theologians!

And don't we average parents raising these challenged kids each have our own Sam? If you pause to think about it, I'll be you could recall some tender truth they've imparted from God that would shame the arrogant. It could be as every-day as the little girl singing "Jesus Loves Me" at the top of her lungs as she swings at the playground. But it's still profound enough to make others pause and connect, if even for a moment, with the Living God.

1 comment:

  1. Yes! This is one of my very favorite scriptures! It is soooo true regarding our children and their communion with God and their expression of understanding/possessing faith. My son has severe intellectual disabilities but he loves to pray. One morning after having gone to bed with a low-grade fever, he seemed well. I asked him, rather tongue-in-cheek to be honest, if God had healed him during the night. My son, who is unable to speak, nodded his head yes. (This was before he was using head nods to communicate in a general sense). That got my attention! so I began talking to him; I asked Him if he talks to God and he looked me directly in the eyes and nodded yes again. I asked if God listens to him an if He understands him, and he again nodded yes to each question. So I asked, "Does God ever talk to you?" and he smiled, and nodded yes.

    It was so awesome! This was from my son who school teachers said his comprehension was on the level of a toddler. Clearly, God does not limit HImself to our perceptions/evaluations. His Spirit makes the simple wise.