Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Membership's Privileges Continued

The privileges we've received with Taylor are terrific. Now imagine the privileges of knowing the God of the Universe! Imagine that the owner of everything...truly everything...wants to give it all to you! Everything Good and Great! God says it's ours when we belong to Him. Of course, with everything comes responsibilities, but let's dwell for a second on the gifts we receive from the Ultimate Giver. We get mercy, grace, Love...perfect Love, forgiveness forever, eternity with Him, relationships, successes, wisdom, perfect joy, perseverance, humility, patience, goodness, kindness, endurance. OK, that's just a 2-second list. Imagine the 2-mile list, the eternal list. God has given us benefits to membership in His family. I'd never be able to explain all these benefits, and they can be recognized every moment of every day if we are willing.

Membership Has Its Privileges

Though we are members of a club most do not voluntarily sign up for, I cannot tell you just how many times we've been shown favor truly because of Taylor's disability. It is hard to ignore her cane and the sympathy one has for a child with a disability. It is harder to ignore her personality. This is her God-given ability, at just six years old, to connect with people...all people!

The latest instance came March 29th. Taylor wanted that dolphin party, so the family headed to San Diego for the day. Taylor was so excited to get there, and she mentioned she really wanted to meet the dolphins...or the trainers. So off to the Shamu Show we went. After explaining to Taylor the extent of the show, we waited for most of the groups to exit. It is always much easier to wait a bit before tromping through the crowd, lest we be trampled. (We move MUCH slower than most people much of the time.) Just as we were heading for the exit, I noticed a trainer talking with a group of people. Tay and I headed down to wait for a chance to meet Vicki soon to be joined by Lauren. Not only did we get to meet her, Taylor had a few questions for her regarding Shamu, his personality, and his behaviors.

As Taylor, Lauren, and I were heading back up the bleachers to meet back with Mike, Vicki gives me the sign to come on over to the "Trainers Only" gate. I realized quickly we were gearing up for something spectacular! I emphatically called to Mike, and all of us entered the gate. We were feet away from the tank behind the show which held six orcas. Not one, two, three...six...and they were right before our eyes! Our eyes met theirs. It was truly surreal! We got to pet them, and Taylor got to feed them. It was absolutely remarkable and breath-taking to feel these magnificent creatures.

Now, I am sure, had we been a "regular" family, we wouldn't have gotten such a gift. I also realize how uncomfortable I used to be with such blessings because of Taylor. I now realize this is how she gets to experience a glimpse of what we see every moment of every day. Because she is disabled, we do receive special favor at times. No longer do I get uncomfortable or embarrassed or feel the need to explain why we got the special attention. I realize this is the only way Taylor can even come close to understanding what we get to see each day. I thank God for my sight, for being able to see these blessed moments when others shine their compassion on my daughter. I am grateful I get to see their tenderness and the tenderness Taylor instills in them.