Several years back, someone knocked on the door in the middle of the day. Sometimes I hide, but he saw me through the window so I had to answer. We had a little friendly chit chat and then he spotted Josh. He was selling something, but I don't remember what it was. At that very moment, I don't think he remembered what he was trying to sell to me. He was taken.
He began a story about a mission's trip he had been on... he watched Josh the whole time he spoke... "in that country they hold children like him in very high esteem. They believe that you can see God when you look into their eyes", he said. "They believe that they are a true reflection of God ".
It was an odd conversation... one that I filed away as rather strange and probably not truthful. I listened politely because he was certainly intent on telling me and, truth be told, I have thought about it several times over the years.
Fast forward to this past week during a family devotion. We don't always get to do them but, on this night, everyone was home so we did a lesson on 1st Corinthians 13:4-7... the love chapter. I've been thinking a lot about this portion of scripture for a few weeks now. We attended a (beautiful) wedding on Labor Day and this scripture was read. It was read at our wedding too, and I've read these verses over and over thru the years, but it never really resonated in my heart until that wedding, this year.
So... family devotions...
This scripture is as follows... "Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres." 1Corinthians 13:4-7
The writer of the devotional asked us to take out the word Love and replace it with Christ... because Christ IS Love. It was beautiful.
The writer of the devotional asked us to take out the word Love and replace it with OUR name. OUCH!!!
My wonderful but likes to make fun of me husband decided to say my name first! Mom is patient... OUCH!! He didn't get beyond that, the kids began snickering.
He went on to read the scripture with everyone's name in it. Okay, I know it wasn't supposed to be funny, but really... we are so far from the likeness of Christ that it made us all visibly uncomfortable. So we laughed.
Then he put Josh's name in there.
Josh is patient, Josh is kind. Josh does not envy, he does not boast and he is not proud. Josh is not rude and is not self-seeking. Josh is not easily angered and he keeps no record of wrongs. Josh does not delight in evil but rejoices in truth. He always protects, always trusts, always hopes and always perseveres.
I'm not fooling myself, I know he's far from the perfection that Christ is... but putting his name in that scripture caused us all to stop laughing... and think.
And wish we were a little more like him.
I don't know what country that boy visited (seems as tho I would have heard about a place that holds people with Down Syndrome in very high esteem)... and I don't even know if the story was true... but maybe, just maybe, there is something to it?