TODAY'S WORD FOR Monday, January 28, 2019:
Any disadvantage that makes success more difficult; a physical or mental disability which may make ordinary activities of daily living more difficult.
For to me to live is Christ and to die is gain.
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
Most of us do not know what it is to deal with a debilitating handicap. A handicap makes ordinary activities more difficult and often puts limits on what one can do. Most of us can only imagine just how frustrating it must be to deal with any physical or mental handicap. We can understand somewhat from a personal perspective because we have had one member of our family who was handicapped.
How does one handle handicaps? There are some well-known people who have achieved great success in spite of their handicap. Let us share several of these with you.
Albert Einstein became a brilliant mathematician and physicists in spite of a learning disability. Alexander Graham Bell also had a learning disability but had some 1000 patents for his inventions.
Marla Runyan competed as a runner in the Olympics although she was blind from birth. Franklin Delano Roosevelt was elected President of the United States for four terms in spite of being crippled by polio and being confined to a wheelchair.
But none of these had as great a handicap as Helen Keller. She was blind, deaf and mute, yet she achieved success that would seem impossible for anyone so handicapped. She became an author, lecturer and a crusader for the handicapped.
Just think how much Helen must have desired to be healed of her afflictions. Yet she was able to say, “I thank God for my handicaps, for through them I have found myself, my work and my God.”
Some people respond to their handicaps with self-pity. They limit their usefulness and service to God and man because they put their concern for themselves first. Helen Keller let the Lord work in her life and in spite of her limitations she made herself useful. She became a respected and well-known as an advocate for those living with handicaps.
The Apostle Paul knew the pangs of suffering. He used his infirmities (handicaps) to honor God rather than allowing his infirmities to use him and he used them for the glory of God.
Paul said in II Corinthians 12:7, “There was given me a thorn in the flesh.” Paul doesn’t say what it was but apparently it was a debilitating and chronic problem that was a hindrance to him. It is recorded that Paul pleaded three times with the Lord to take it away but God did not. Instead God said, “My grace is sufficient for you, My power is made perfect in weakness” II Corinthians 12:9. The weaker we are the more God’s grace shines through. Paul was able to testify to God’s grace. Paul said, “For when I am weak, then I am strong” II Corinthians 12:10.
For everyone who is suffering physical affliction Paul has a word of encouragement in I Corinthians 15:50-53. Our physical disabilities and handicaps are temporary. Paul tells us that when Christ returns, we all will be given new bodies. Our new bodies will not have any disabilities. They will never become sick and they will never perish.
Many of our email friends (now over 50,000 daily) write us about infirmities and handicaps that concern them. Our prayer is that these few thoughts today on HANDICAPS might be a blessing to you and that you will find God’s grace sufficient for you and that His power will be made perfect in your weakness.
Our memory verse for this week is found in I John 5:13.
These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.
Help me to work through any handicaps that I face in my life and allow me to rejoice in what blessings God gives me. Give me a sensitive heart for those that I meet with handicaps that I may be a blessing and an encouragement to them.
These Family Devotional thoughts are written by Dr. Ken Phillips, Executive Director of America's Hunger
Solution, and his wife Dottie. Ken has had ministry positions
with The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, World Vision, Youth For Christ, World Opportunities International,
and World Bible Society. He also has consulted for more than 30 Christian ministries in management and stewardship
development. They have published a book called No Problems Only Situations that discusses the journey of their family.
Ken and Dottie have been married for 60 years, and have 6 children, 20 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren. Their
second book, TODAY'S WORD, includes 365 daily
devotionals and is now available for only $10.
Ken & Dottie Phillips
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