We live in a world with God’s creativity all around us. We see unique beauty in the many things He created. Whether we look to animals, plants or people, we see God’s creative genius everywhere. Regarding people, we see the diversity of God’s handiwork in that 75-80% are neuro-typical — their brains are wired typically — while the other 20-25% are wired differently.
The world often considers these individuals to be disabled in some way. While I certainly understand this perspective, I can’t lose sight of the fact that each of us is created with unique gifts along with unique struggles.
As a mom of a child who has been diagnosed with a hidden disability, I know the challenges our families face. These disabilities — Anxiety, Asperger, ADHD, Autism, Bipolar disorder, Depression, Epilepsy, Learning disabilities, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Schizophrenia, Sensory Processing Disorders, Tourette syndrome, and others — are differences that affect every area of a child’s and a family’s life.
While the medical community is beginning to understand these differences, they are less understood by society at large and by some in the church. As if the diagnosis and daily challenges were not enough, the burden is often made heavier by a lack of understanding and support from some in the body of Christ. Families struggling with these issues often feel alone in their journey as they seek to raise their child or live with their family member who has one of these disabilities.
Our family has lived with our son’s differences for thirteen years now and with a formal diagnosis for ten years. We have gone before the Lord regularly for the wisdom to raise him according to Biblical principles but found little help from a Christian worldview. The Lord has taught us much and we have the joy of sharing those things with other families living the journey.
As we enter our third year of ministry at Chosen Families, we are committed to provide a place of community for you as well as information, resources, and encouragement. We are committed to live out the call of II Corinthians 1: 3-4 to comfort you with the comfort we have received from God. We do not seek to replace other good organizations that have resources for these challenges; on the contrary, we will provide links for you to connect to them. Instead we seek to fill a unique niche to help you connect to God and to other believers as you walk this special journey. You will find blogs from different voices, legal commentary, and other information we hope will be helpful to you.
We are also committed to empower the church to do the work of ministry. Many pastors are appropriately concerned about these issues but feel ill-equipped to address them. They need information, resources, and encouragement to do the difficult work of ministry in this area. And why should they minister in this area? — it provides great opportunity for the gospel of Christ.
The organization is called ChosenFamilies.org because we believe God is Sovereign and does not make mistakes. He created each individual for a purpose and in no case did He create the person and then say, “Oops, I messed up there.” As the old saying goes, “God didn’t make no junk.” If we are to be people of the Word, we have to believe that God created each individual as He intended. We may not understand that intent; but if we are wise, we will accept it.
A verse that has provided great encouragement and comfort to me is this: “One thing God has spoken, two things have I heard: that You, O God, are strong, and that You, O Lord, are loving.” Psalm 62: 11-12a. Each of us who loves a family member who is wired differently is chosen to love, and be loved by, that person. God has given us the high calling of being the body of Christ to our family member. It is a privilege and a challenge. We pray for, and thank God for, the grace to live before Him in the challenge. Join us in our journey.