My World

What I see in those around me,
Is quite remarkable.
A teenager who instead of heading home after his meeting,
Stays late to join a practice already in session.
A young man who, when he comes in last,
Congratulates his teammates and cheers them on faithfully.
Who thought he only helped around the house this past week enough to earn a dollar’s allowance,
Then, puts 20 cents into the offering.
A middle child who cannot leave the house
Without saying goodbye to all of the pets.
Who sings in the shower,
And shares everything that’s on his mind.
Who remains friends with a boy who others shun,
Because he sees the good in him that others don’t.
And even when that friend is being frustrating,
Knows that being a friend is more important than how he’s feeling.
A daughter who writes stories
And letters to her grandmother about everything under the sun.
Who gets hit in the nose by the softball her mom threw,
But gets back to practice right away, despite the pain.
Who acts silly in school,
Because she doesn’t get enough recess.
Who can be seen tumbling to her heart’s content in the grass during recess,
And wishes she wasn’t too tall to enroll in gymnastics again.
A husband who runs the kids all over town,
Because his wife excitedly signs them up for great experiences.
Who hates water and sand,
But will be going to OBX this summer anyway.
Who dislikes cooking,
But has dinner faithfully on the table every night.
Who comforts his grateful wife,
And listens and loves and patiently waits for the family’s busyness to wane.
This is my world and oh, I am grateful.

No Mistakes

I was listening to the radio on my way to class tonight. The radio host has Asperger Syndrome. He spoke about how all of the difficulties he experienced throughout his life, due to his social awkwardness, have lead him to his job (not having to worry about facial expressions and body language) and also to doing some of the other things he does: being a spokesperson for Cure International, writing a book, and sharing his perspective on the world. His message was, God does not create mistakes. While He wants us to rely on Him, he will also allow our difficulties to shape us to be able to work with others (and allow Him to be glorified).

I always think of my son whenever someone mentions anything about autism or Aspergers. What I realized is that his difficulties have shaped him. He is a very sensitive and compassionate young man. In fact, I am also astonished when I see him ask someone if they are okay or how he speaks with a little child. Although he may not be comfortable or understand how they are feeling, he asks the right questions, softens his voice for the situation, and listens. More importantly, he finds bullying of any kind (even perceived) to be unacceptable. He is not happy when kids who support one sports team gives the fans of another team a “hard time.” Most recently, he was assigned to research and report on a “social cause.” He chose to research Cure International, partially because the radio host speaks about it. More so, he chose it because he learned that Cure offers surgeries to children overseas who have been born with cleft palate or club foot, scenarios that are easily address in American hospitals. It moved him that he could raise money to help children who would be ostracized because of their difference.

Today, I was very grateful for who he is and how he was “wonderfully made” (Psalm 139:14).