Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Beautiful Enough to See It

My Mother-in-Love, Momma B, sent this story to me in an email, and it touched my heart today.  Working with children with special needs for the past couple months has opened my eyes to a beauty that so many people miss out on.  When I see others down on the floor, going over and over a simple process to help make a child more independant, I can't help but smile and praise Jesus for giving that person grace, patience, and an eye for the beauty within.

The following story made me think of what caregivers, Special Education teachers, Instructional Aides, Occupational Therapists, Speech Therapists, Adaptive PE coaches, Physical Therapists, and Resource Specialists do for the children in their care.  I see it daily.
A blind boy sat on the steps of a building with a hat by his feet. He held up a sign which said: "I am blind, please help." There were only a few coins in the hat.
A man walked by. He took a few coins from his pocket and dropped them into the hat. He then took the sign, turned it around, and wrote some words on the back. He put the sign back so that everyone who walked by would see the new words.

Soon, the hat began to fill up. Many more people were giving money to the blind boy.
That afternoon, the man who had changed the sign came to see how the boy was doing. The boy recognized his footsteps and asked, "Were you the one who changed my sign this morning? What did you write?"
The man said, "I only wrote the truth. I said what you said but in a different way." "I wrote: "Today is a beautiful day, but I cannot see it."
Both signs told people that the boy was blind, but the first sign simply said the boy was blind. The second sign reminded people how blessed they were that they were not blind.
Should we be surprised that the second sign was more effective?
There is no beauty in shunning others for their differences.  True beauty comes in Christ-like love, where one person sees another's weaknesses and loves them all the more. 

There are hard days in the special ed classroom I'm working in right now.  Days where we feel we've made no progress--as if we're just banging our head against the wall in vain.  But there are days like yesterday, when a teacher--who had come in last week saying that she felt like giving up on one of her students--came in beaming with pride over the wonderful speech presentation her student had given that day.  That little guy and I worked so hard on that speech.  We had to practice the words he would be saying, we had to practice making eye contact, using a nice loud voice, and standing straight and tall (that cute little guy is a wiggle worm!)  Yesterday was our little victory.  I'm so proud of him for doing so well!

My friend Emily in San Diego called me this afternoon with a, "Well, I was sitting here quilting, and I missed my crafting buddy!  How are you doing?"  We talked for a wonderfully long time, and I caught her up to date on life and work lately.  There was a smile in her voice as she asked questions about the little ones I work with daily, and she told me about Sara's newest victory with the little boy (with Down Syndrome) that she works with as a caregiver.  Apparently, David is a whiz at computers, but has never learned to tie his shoes.  Check out this link to see how Sara worked around that!

Doesn't her love and care for his wellbeing make you smile?!?

 Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” (Matthew 19:14)  He did not show discernment between those little children who could run freely up to Him, and those needed assistance.  He did not show preference between the little children who could sing His praises and repeat His words and the little ones who simply clung to His hand. 

I love that we have a Savior who reminds us to seek for the beauty in all.  The joy of digging deep enough, seeing little eyes light up for the first time, is a joy worth holding on to. 


  1. My stepbrother is a low functioning downs syndrome kid with tourette's syndrome as well. While he can be very difficult at times, he brings our family much joy and we miss him now that he has grown up and joined a fabulous group home.

  2. this is a beautiful post Beth! I really loved reading it!


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