John is 13 and has cerebral palsy. He can’t walk and his dad carried him for three hours down the mountain where they live to the nearest road, where they took a four hour bus journey to come to the center for the 10-day support program. At home, he usually stays in bed. They don’t have chairs with backs, only metal stools that can’t support him. Still, he is a clever, cheerful boy. His parents wanted him to walk again. Inside that small body was a person who wanted to interact with you, who had things to say. John’s mom did not smile. Thirteen years of heartache that no one can fully understand. She was John’s main carer and she was just so tired. One day I saw her and another parent out on the riverside walkway with their children taking the sun. While I was chatting to them, a lady passing by enquired about John’s condition and why he wasn’t in school? Was it because he was too ‘stupid’?
Mom could only smile in embarrassment. I could not help but say that he was a bright boy and it was only because the schools did not have the facilities that he could not go to school. This is only a little of what she would have faced each day for so long with no one to say otherwise on her behalf. She was in our thoughts a lot and we wanted her to know that she was important too.
Towards the end of the program, she was the one that really took in the message of how special each man, woman and child is created to be – there is not two that are fully alike, and to draw strength for each new day.
Will you pray for China?
- Give thanks for the progam and the opportunity it provides to support both disabled people and their carers.
- Pray for John’s Mom as she considers what she heard at this program. Pray she would realise she is important too.