At Preschool we made pictures of ourselves doing things that can help the world. One child noticed a figure had no limbs and asked, “Where are the arms and legs?” The preschooler said, “I only made what was important. You don’t need arms or legs to help. You only need a heart.”
While I write this, there are reports of people in Boston, MA with missing limbs from a terrible attack. I am hoping they can see what my preschool friend sees. Limbs are not needed to live a full and meaningful life. My parents were married by a minister who had no arms. He had beautiful handwriting that he accomplished with his foot. He drove a car with one foot on the wheel and one foot on the pedals. My mother remembers walking with him in the old church hallway, and he noticed a nail was sticking out. Instead of writing up a request for building and grounds to fix that, he got his hammer, swung it over his head and pounded in the nail. It was not a big deal. It was a man seeing what needed to be done and doing it. It was not a man seeing what he could not do and fretting.
He was asked once if there was anything he could not do without arms. He said one day his wife left him at home with his young son in the play pen, and the son started to cry. He could not physically lift him out of that play pen so he climbed in and played with him in there. A person with solutions instead of problems is a powerful person.
The people in Boston have some grieving to do. They have had their life changed by no choice of their own. However, the survivors now will have the choice to make their life what they want it to be. It does not have to be a life of limitations. It can be a life of fulfillment, of fixing and not fretting.
Friends of Bethany is an organization that helps in situations with amputees and shark accidents. They will be in Boston this week giving hope and Encouragement Packages. Bethany Hamilton lost her arm in a shark attack and was portrayed in the movie “Soul Surfer.” She was not expecting to lose a limb just like the Boston people were not expecting their attack. She also was not expecting the many good things that can come out of bad. Bethany has a heart, and she is not afraid to use it. Bethany is done fretting and is now in the world of fixing. (http://www.friendsofbethany.com)
- What in your life do you spend too much time fretting about?
- When in your life have you led with your heart and not let limitations matter?
- Will you take a moment today and rest on President Obama’s words from his April 18th, 2013 interfaith prayer service? “Our faith in each other, our love for each other, our love for country, our common creed that cuts across whatever superficial differences there may be, that is our power.”
- How can you fix your heart to be large enough to forgive people who make poor choices?
“I could never have embraced this many people with two arms.” Bethany Hamilton