Almighty God, thank you for loving and caring hearts who remind me that I am not disabled. I am specially abled. Father, I too have been a victim like so many people who have physical and/or developmental challenges. I have been laughed at and called stupid when driving my power chair in Toronto. I have been judged by some colleagues, friends and family as being lazy and unmotivated. They failed to understand that I have a poor memory for the things people say or tell me to do and that I am a very strong visual learner. I use a power chair, wheelchair and walker for my mobility because I have a neurological condition. I don’t know from one day to the next how much ability I will have to walk. Some mobility days are better than others.
Lord, I cry as I think of the many people who are harmed by the language we have in our society for those who have physical and/or developmental challenges and those with mental illness. Why do so many people judge us so harshly? I know. It is their ignorance speaking. But, Lord, the words of judgement still hurt deeply. “Do you work at being stupid? Kevin, pay attention! I have the authority to have you fired. You need to stop helping Kevin. I know why you didn’t make it through your ministerial training. You’re lazy.” Then, thougb I have forgiven my father the memory of his painful judgements of my character lives on. “You’re stupid. You’re weak. You’re clumsy. Your brother is smarter than you will ever be. You’re a failure. You’re a mama’s boy. I wish you had never been born!”
Today and every day help us all to remember that we are not the labels society puts on us. We are as the Psalmist David declares in Psalm 139, “fearfully and wonderfully made.” We are all specially abled because You made us.
Heal the wounds of the specially abled and those who care for them. Unite us, oh God, to move forward with policies that will give those with physical, developmental and hidden disabilities such as with mental illness as well as those with chronic and rare medical conditions, all the support they need to be fully contributing members of our society.
Father, I am tired and worn after over 25 years of social advocacy work. This servant needs a time of rest. Lead me to the quiet waters. Restore me in body, mind and spirit so that recharged I can yet fight again for those who feel the system doesn’t care and is indifferent to their needs.
I step away for Your appointed time to rest and focus on my calling. Give me the sharpness of mind and heart I will need for my spiritual formation studies to become a priest with Holy Catholic Church International. Use me to forge healing bridges through work with multiple faith groups. Teach me what I need to know to be Your servant. Bless and guide those who will mentor me. Remind me when the Enemy attacks that I am not the lies darkness has sought for me to believe.
Father, thank you for bringing Karen into my life. What a beautiful gift it is when my legs are ready to dump me that she holds me in her arms and kisses me! She lovingly reminds me when my work for You is done I will have a body with no disability. I will not have to fight with pain racking my body every day for which I need to take pain relievers. I will no longer have any neuropathic pain from a constant burning sensation and tingling of my feet into my legs. What a relief to me that will be!
As I live for You each day help me to walk with Your love in my heart. Through my pain I pray others will see how much I love You and want to serve You and those You call me to. Give me the compassion of spirit to always extend two open hands of love.
Heal me, oh God, at the level You want for the work You have for me to do.Teach me what it means to have a missionary heart for the wounded, abused, addicted and the poor. Bless the counseling ministry You are calling Karen and I into. Help us to be Your wounded healers. Lead me into the time I will need of renewed health to do Your work.
Father, prepare me for my calling to be a chaplain, teacher,singer and writer. Open doors for the music ministry You have for me as I write Your songs with the help of others You will bring into my path.
Father, I am thankful for those who have helped and continue to do so as they are called by You. Shower my supportive family, friends, colleagues and the worldwide community of my readers with Your richest blessings. Give them back one hundred fold what they give Karen and I. Groceries, money for medications the government does not provide, gas cards,those always welcome Tim Hortons cards that allow Karen and I to have a coffee out and that dear friend who has added to our theological and counseling library – these things are some of the ways they show their love. Father, what is far more important than all of these things is that loving embrace they give us when we meet. I think they are specially abled too because they have learned what it means to love and to receive that love in return.
Thank you, Lord, for the caress of Your wind. Thank you for each breath I breathe. Thank you for Karen, who loves me with tenderness and the beauty of her soul. Thank you that I am specially abled.
Kevin Osborne, B.A. in Clinical Christian Counseling St. James the Elder Theological Seminary, BTh. Canada Christian College & Graduate School, M.A. Christian Clinical Counseling,St.James the Elder Theological Seminary, M.A. -Th.D. student Applied Theology with a major in Clinical Christian Counseling St. James the Elder Theological Seminary, D.D., D Sc., Diplomate in Creative Ministry, is a certified Christian counselor. He is a member of The Word Guild, a Christian writer’s group in Canada.