I am often surprised by the ability of the members of Special Gathering to “turn lemons into lemonade.” The other day I had a conversation with one of our SpG members. When he was 18 years old, this young man was in an automobile accident which left his body torn apart. He is confined to a wheelchair, unable to walk or use his hands. His continual spastic movements are awkward and tiring. Yet, his attitude is whole and even holy.
As I drove the member to our Vero program, he bragged about what a wonderful and happy life he had and how much God had blessed him. Had I not seen the radiant smile on his face, I would have thought that he was being sarcastic or playing a cruelty joke on himself. However, one look at the joy and delight flowing from his eyes told me that this was a man grateful for life. He is delighted to have a relationship with His God.
Often, as hard as life becomes for people within the mentally challenged community, there seems to be a thread of joy that weaves its way into the broken lives. At times, it seems trite to say, “Christ makes a difference in our lives.” Yet, when you see the love of Jesus flowing into hurting people and then experience the love of Christ flowing from their lives, there is a thankful appreciation for what the love of God can do in our lives.