I have always believed that God values all life and all life has a purpose. To me Psalm 139: 13-16 is an affirmation of God’s intent, “that God creates all life purposefully and that life begins in the womb” (Shannon Dingle)  This week I would like to share a part of my life, that changed me, taught me that God values all life and all life has a purpose. 

Psalm 139:13-16 

 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.

The students of Trousdale School changed my life and taught me that all life, created of God, has a value and purpose. The school serves high functioning adults with intellectual disabilities, providing academics and life skills for the purpose of learning independence. Their vision is “Learning for Life.”  Trousdale School’s way is a welcome and new approach to an area of our population that has to often been just cared for, accepting their limitations and allowing those limitations to identify their place in society.That won’t fly at Trousdale School. Faith is a fragile thing that requires a closeness to Christ that is more than a two-day a week investment. I must state up-front that my views may not be yours, but that for me is not a problem. Faith never lets you accept things as they are, because there is always God’s way and will and that’s the catch here. Do you have a close enough relationship with God and the Holy Spirit to discern His will. Now back to school. The students at Trousdale School and the teachers, staff and volunteers have faith that believes there is always more that you can do. I will be realistic and tell you of course thy have limitations but they do not allow them to define who they are.

So who are these people? Were they chosen by God to bear such afflictions in this life? Of course not, God has given them some attributes that are worth noting.  They were not chosen to be less than anyone. They were chosen to be stronger, braver, and, most likely, a little more compassionate than most of the world.  (http://www.patheos.com/) I might add that happy is a state of being in this place. 

 What is Down Syndrome?   Down syndrome (DS or DNS), also known as trisomy 21, is a genetic disorder caused by the presence of all or part of a third copy of chromosome 21. It is typically associated with physical growth delays, characteristic facial features and mild to moderate intellectual disability.

 What is Autism?   Autism is a developmental disorder characterized by troubles with social interaction and communication, and by restricted and repetitive behavior. Parents usually notice signs in the first two or three years of their child’s life.

These are rather short and cryptic definitions and do not present a full picture of the scope of these conditions.

John 9:1-3 makes it very plain that disability is not a punishment for sin.  

John 9:1-3  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.” 

Disability is never a result of falling from God’s favor, or a lack of love on His part. Any word to the contrary is against all that the Lord stands for. But God does have a plan for us all that will ultimately result in his Glory. It is our job to decipher how our lives, our bodies, and our minds, can bear witness to His grace. Whatever it is that we have been given, it has been given to show light in some way.” http://www.patheos.com/blogs/christiancrier/2015/06/25/top-7-bible-verses-about-disabilities/

Job 29:15  I was eyes to the blind and feet to the lame. 

As believers, we are called to be the hands and feet to those who need us, all in the name of Jesus.

Galatians 4:13-14  As you know, it was because of an illness that I first preached the gospel to you, and even though my illness was a trial to you, you did not treat me with contempt or scorn. Instead, you welcomed me as if I were an angel of God, as if I were Christ Jesus himself.

Paul was thankful that he was not treated like a burden but welcomed and loved. This time of healing allowed him to go on and take the gospel to so many. These special people go on to attain remarkable skills and abilities and in time become a valued part of the lives they touch.

We all have areas of our hearts, bodies, and minds that just don’t work the way we want them too. To often we turn away from these very special people but consider that is not what a loving God would have us do. In His eyes, there are no disabilities, only these wonderful special people whom have been chosen to fulfill a wonderful thing in others lives. What is it they have been called to do? They teach us to love unconditionally and trust that tomorrow will always be a better day. Trousdale School is a special place for special people. They make us a better person, through love and trust. All God asks is that we help one another to do so.

Reference for this blog- http://www.patheos.com/blogs/christiancrier/2015/06/25/top-7-bible-verses-about-disabilities/

This link will take you to the Trousdale School web site.     http//www.trousdaleschool.org

Thanks for stopping by the pew this week……Life is good