THE BENEFITS OF A HANDICAP! 10/92
--Handle with Care! DO 2832
1. Praise the Lord! Thank You Jesus! Hallelujah! I've told you before of my many sicknesses, accidents & injuries throughout my life, very few of which left me permanently handicapped, thank the Lord. Being born with the Spanish Influenza right after World War I--a plague which slaughtered over 20 million people around the World--I was left with somewhat affected bowels throughout my life, subject to looseness, the runs, diarrhea or whatever you want to call it. However, due to your prayers, the Lord has now completely healed me of that trouble, which grew worse in recent years, but of which I am now totally delivered & my bowels function normally, thank the Lord!
2. I've enumerated many of my sicknesses & injuries for you before, such as the hole in my head due to an auto accident when I was nine; & before that, when I was only five, the gas explosion which blinded me, & would have made me permanently blind had it not been for prayer. And I had many other injuries which were serious & could have left me permanently disabled if it had not been for the Lord. The Devil was trying to get me from my earliest years through to some of my latest, but I have survived them all, thank the Lord, & thanks to your prayers, & only a few have left me permanently semi-disabled.
3. --Such as my broken left arm when I was 12, which left me with a partially crippled arm, as it was not set straight. Nevertheless, I can still use my left hand & fingers, although with some difficulty, which has caused me, in compensation, to develop a much stronger right hand, as I have told you before. I was still able to even learn to type, although due to the awkward position of my left hand in a sort of sideways slant, it was difficult for me to strike some of the keys with my left fingers. So I was very happy when dear Maria came along to relieve me of my typing duties, because after much typing, sometimes my left hand & wrist would be quite painful.
4. A serious cut across the base of the first two fingers of my left hand could have been very tragic had it not been again for the Lord's healing, but ever since, those two fingers sometimes seem to have difficulty in feeling.
5. An injury when I was young & climbing trees nearly developed into cancer, but the Lord healed that also.
6. A knife wound under my left knee almost cut the tendon to that leg, which would have left me permanently crippled for sure in those days.
7. My left ankle was run over by an automobile when I was very young, & according to the doctors, was supposed to have left me permanently lame. But again due to prayer, I was completely healed, thank the Lord!
8. My right knee, which I twisted when playing football, has given me trouble off & on, & even lamed me sufficiently to have to walk on crutches at times, but nothing permanent, thank the Lord.
9. A fall which broke my tailbone damaged my sacroiliac (a joint or area at the base of my spine) & was extremely painful for some weeks afterward. It had to heal as naturally as it could, as it could not be set, & has often caused me pain throughout my life, somewhat depending on the weather.--But nothing that I could not endure & that the Lord did not relieve me of.
10. Some very severe attacks of acute appendicitis throughout my life nearly killed me, but after the Lord so wonderfully healed me when I was a teenager, I have seldom had anything but very light annoyances from that particular organ.--Probably when I've overeaten.
11. Of course, you know the difficulty I've had with my stomach & swallowing in recent years, but you have prayed for me & I am now able to continue to take plenty of nourishment, though mostly blended & liquid, & have remained in very good health on that slim diet which I partake of about every 12 hours, twice a day, but so nourishing that it keeps me alive & well & almost healthier than ever!--And almost fasting, which for many years I was never very willing to do.
12. But hallelujah, thank You Jesus, I'm feeling fine now, thanks to your prayers, & going strong & healthy & active, & completely, freely ambulant, meaning I can walk & climb the stairs & be very free with my hands in manual labour & various light work, with all my faculties & all my limbs & senses operating beautifully, thank the Lord!
13. I've always had extremely keen eyesight & did not even require glasses for reading till I was 45, & my famous sense of taste & smell have been notoriously acute ever since I can remember, & still are. My sense of feeling throughout my entire body is still very active & enjoyable with very few hurts, thank the Lord, & many pleasures.
14. Even my sense of hearing has been very keen, & I can identify even the faintest sounds, such as the nibbling of a little mouse or the scratching of a bird on the roof, or a distant sound.--Except that I was partially deafened in my right ear due to an accident which occurred when I was 14 at the Miami Airshow, to which we teenage boys went for all the excitement & thrill of the air races etc. This was in the early days of airplanes when biplanes were the thing, the slow double-winged planes, the kind they still sometimes use for crop dusters. Monoplanes, the single-wingers, were something entirely new. The old biplanes were so slow, they'd put on a stunt at the airshow of a girl standing between the two wings dancing the Charleston while holding on to the struts in flight! So aviation has come a long way since then.
15. However, I made the mistake of deciding to pay the fare & fly upside-down in a flight trainer, at which time my right ear suddenly seemed like it burst, & I developed an aneurism (a permanent swelling of an artery or vein) in the blood vessel there, which is a swollen, balloon-like problem. This seemed to damage my right ear in some way, I don't know whether it was the ear drum or what. When I was young I used to play tricks & blow air through my right ear. But it did seem to hinder my hearing in my right ear so that I became partially hearing-impaired, partially deaf in that ear, & have been ever since. But as a result, my left ear became even more keen.--For which I'm very thankful, because that's on the side that Mama talks to me when she lies with me in bed, & I'm very able to hear her faintest whisper, praise the Lord!
16. --That is, I was, until this morning when I woke up, & was suddenly deaf in my left ear!--A disability which came as quite a shock! I've had a little trouble with that ear off & on in recent years because it developed a considerable amount of wax, which would sometimes briefly impair my hearing until I got it cleaned out with a tissue & my left little finger. But it had never been so completely stopped up as it was this morning. So I was rather startled & suddenly wondering what it would be like to be so deaf.--Partially deaf in my right ear & almost totally deaf in my left!
17. I began listening for the usual sounds that I'm familiar with, to see which I could hear & which I couldn't. Internal sounds were still quite clear, such as the grinding & cracking of my teeth & burping & movements of gas or air in my throat, & I even scratched my head to see if I could still hear that. And due to the cranial bone conduction, I could still clearly hear that. I later found out that I could still clearly hear my own voice as well, which I'm now hearing as I talk to you. But distant sounds were quite faint.
18. The sounds of neighbours or passing automobiles seemed to fade away completely. I even thought the refrigerator had gone off, but by putting my ear close to it, I could still hear it purring. But even other nearby sounds seemed quite faint, such as the sounds that I love to hear, like the chirping of the birds & the whispering of the wind. These old familiar pleasant & enjoyable sounds that I love seemed to be gone entirely, & I began to wonder what it was going to be like to be almost totally deaf.
19. I wondered how Mama & I were going to get along with her almost totally blind & me almost totally deaf! I've found that Mama's blindness has caused her to develop much keener hearing, so perhaps my deafness would improve my other senses. Thank God I could still talk & hear the sound of my voice, & I was thankful that physical deafness would not interfere with the sound of the Lord's voice in my heart & mind. I could still hear from Him clearly, thank the Lord! Although the sound of others about me was somewhat dulled & faint, nevertheless, I could still hear a little.
20. In some ways it was a blessing! I thought it could be a blessing, because there are lots of things that I'd just as soon not hear, & that I don't like to hear.--Such as the sounds of this wicked World & its noisy music & its very annoying vehicular traffic. All this seemed now distant & far away & only faint, thank the Lord. So that was a blessing & could be an improvement, praise the Lord!
21. I thought, well, deafness is not too bad! At least there are a lot of things you don't have to hear any more, thank the Lord. As the famous poet Wordsworth once wrote, "The World is too much with us," & its noises & noise pollution are certainly entirely too much with us. For those of us who have very good & keen hearing, it's often very annoying.--Especially when you're out in it. Of course, it's very important to be able to hear well when you're doing certain duties such as driving or caring for children & listening for any dangerous sounds, so there are some disadvantages, particularly that it's difficult to hear others speaking to you.
22. So I thought, as I sat up to write my log, that there are worse things than being deaf, & if I had to, I could live with it. I hadn't told Mama yet. She was still asleep because it was quite early in the morning, about five o'clock, so I just went about my early morning writing & studying, & experimenting with my new-found disability, trying to learn what I could hear & what I could not. The Lord seemed to give me perfect peace about it & helped me not to worry, & I could see how I could live with it if I had to, as you can with many types of disabilities, without them necessarily interfering with your work & your service for the Lord. We've found that to be true with quite a few of our Family Members who have various problems.
23. I think it was a test to see how I would take it & whether I would get upset about it & worry about it, or whether I would calmly receive it & do the best I could with it until the Lord did otherwise. And of course, due to your prayers & so many people praying for me, how could I have anything very long that would prevent me from doing my work for the Lord! So it wasn't very long afterwards that suddenly my left ear popped open & I could hear clearly again!
A Lesson in Not Fearing a Disability!
24. So thank you for your prayers, you certainly keep me alive & well & fully functioning in every way, so that I can serve you & the Lord to the best of my ability. Thank God my mind is keen & alert & thinks very well, & receives things from the Lord very clearly. I'm still able to analyse the news & watch for the Signs of the End & the soon-coming of the Lord, praise the Lord!--And my tongue is in good shape to tell you about it!
25. So all in all, though it was a rather frustrating experience at first, all's well that ends well, & everything that happens to the Lord's children is for the best & for the good of that child to teach us a lesson. "All things work together for good to them who love the Lord."--Rom.8:28. I'm now well & strong with good eyesight, fairly good hearing, excellent sense of smell & taste & feeling, & very physically active, strong & well, thank the Lord, & thanks to your prayers.
26. And I had a good lesson in not fearing a disability & even being willing to accept it, if necessary, if it would help my hearing the Lord. Like with Mama's eyes, if it would improve my service for the Lord, it would be worth it! Mama has actually dictated more Letters than when her sight was unimpaired. She was too busy then reading & absorbing all the problems of the whole Earth to spend much time giving forth or writing you about your problems & their solutions, & giving words of encouragement & inspiration.
Benefits of a Handicap!
27. So there are benefits to a handicap in some ways. I'm sure the Lord will not allow you to be afflicted more than you're able to bear, or in a way that will keep you from bearing fruit. Praise the Lord! Even my eating handicap has proven a blessing in disguise. I don't crave food so much any more or have to spend so much time eating it & digesting it, & I'm in just as good or better health than ever before. So thanks for all your prayers. I'm sure that He will answer them some day, & He has already in making it possible for me to easily swallow the liquefied & blended foods, & to enjoy them & digest them & have them do me lots of good, praise the Lord! And He has used Mama's blindness to cause her to work even harder.--And she is still even able to listen on tape to the leadership reports & letters of those who write her & who need counsel & help. Praise the Lord!
28. So there are often benefits to some handicaps, thank the Lord, & the Lord never allows anything to happen to you except that which is for your good & your testing & training & learning & to your advantage, as I've written in several Letters on "The Advantage of a Handicap" long ago.--And it might be well for you to read those once again after this one. (See "Handicapped?--It Can Be a Blessing!", ML#830; "The Advantage of a Handicap!", ML#1111; & "The Advantage of a Handicap--#2!", ML#1937.)
29. So cheer up! If you've suffered an illness, an accident or an injury or some difficulty that the Devil has tried to discourage you with & make you feel like, "Well, it's all over now! I can't do anything now, I'm not much use to anybody & I guess I'll have to suffer this for the rest of my life unless the Lord miraculously heals me!"--Cheer up! Look up! Rev up & revere the Lord & respect & honour Him & have faith & belief in Him that you can be healed or overcome it, one or the other, whatever's best for you.
30. The Apostle Paul suffered a thorn in the flesh for many years, perhaps even until his death. And from what he wrote, it sounds like it was poor eyesight. (See Gal.4:13-15.) But whatever it was, he said it was a "messenger of Satan" sent & allowed by the Lord to help keep him humble, & it certainly did the trick!--2Cor.12:7-9.
31. So, do you need a handicap? Do you need some kind of trial or test or difficulty to teach you some lesson so that you might learn to be a better servant of the Lord? If so, rejoice & be glad in it & thank the Lord for it, & trust Him that He will not give you more than you can bear, but will soon deliver you if it's good for you to be delivered. Praise the Lord!
32. So "Keep your eyes on Jesus! Do not watch the waves! Keep your eyes on Jesus, it's faith in Him that saves! Keep your eyes on Jesus, His promises avail! Keep your eyes on Jesus, His Word will never fail!" Thank You Lord! And keep on keeping on for Jesus no matter what! Amen? Praise the Lord? Hallelujah? Thank You Jesus? Can you praise Him & thank Him even for your trials & testings & tribulations?--Trusting that they'll do you good & make you stronger & a better witness for the Lord? Thank You Lord!
33. God bless you! We know that whatever happens to you as God's child is good for you, & "all things work together for good to them that love the Lord," & will make you a better servant of the Lord & a better witness for Him, & a stronger soldier for the fight! Praise the Lord! God bless you & keep you! We pray for you & we love you, & will forever, thank the Lord! So until next time, keep going for the Lord no matter what!--In Jesus' name, amen!--Do you?
Copyright (c) 1998 by The Family