|Photo image courtesy of almgren via 123rf.com|
As their older sister, it’s hard for me to see the two of them represented by their special needs--all I see is their potential capabilities as average people. I tend to not recognize what sets them apart from the typical child and become frustrated when the two of them claim to be incapable of reaching the standards that everybody around them is able to achieve. I become tired of the “excuses” they toss around to their superiors and peers. However, in the eyes of God, their claims do not stand as excuses or crutches for misbehavior, but rather as different gifts.
See, in opposition to the average person’s views, perceiving their disorders as burdens or a road-block in one’s life, the Lord sees every action executed by the special people in our lives as the gifts He has given them to further his kingdom, His glory, and the God-inspired joy within us. Though their mannerisms, their absurd actions and lifelong struggles may be confusing to us, the parents and siblings of such unique individuals, we are called to learn and teach others that these people have been granted the gifts which God has suited best for them in their lives.
Parents, it’s hard to help your “normal” child understand why their lives seem so wildly different from their sibling’s lives, but what is important is to allow the whole family be aware of the gifts of the Lord that set them apart from each other. For the children in the family without special needs, it may be a gift for them to excel in mathematics, and for others in the family it may be a gift that they are able to add two-plus-two. For some it is a gift to be able to share hours of their lives through community service, and for others it is a gift for them to learn to share their toys without a fight. For some it is a gift to be able to sing the words in Korean, and for others it is a gift beyond compare to be able to hum what lyrics were meant to be in English.