Yep, another show that I like. A young couple buys houses at auctions and has to take a gamble on whether they will be able to invest money in these houses and make money flipping it, or will they invest money and lose it so that it becomes a flop. I like to watch the creative and remodeling processes that go into each home. My kind of thing. I love it when at the end of the show, after all their hard work, they sell the house and make a huge profit.
Yesterday, I wrote a post entitled “You’ve Been Chopped.” It dealt with the idea of those who judge us and how easily they chop us off in their lives. I drew an analogy of becoming paralyzed and some of the cruel things people can say to you. If you look at my Facebook page where I shared this post, you will read the comments of several of my friends who are also paralyzed and you will see that I was not alone.
But today….today I want to flip this thing around! After hearing some of my bad stories yesterday, let me tell you a few good ones to balance it out.
After I was paralyzed, my house was not accessible at all!! I had steps into my house, my bathroom was horrible to get in and out of, I had to brush my teeth sideways trying to lean my unbalanced body over a sink and spit (oh how many toothpaste messes did I clean off my lap!), and it was a nightmare just trying to get ready for the day or go somewhere. A friend in our church brought in loads of dirt and completely filled in our front yard and built the yard up to my porch. Then, he and another friend poured a sidewalk right up to my porch. Another friend of ours who was a pastor took it upon himself to call churches and raise money to remodel our bedroom and give me an accessible bathroom. I will never, ever forget those acts of true love.
Our small country church family at that time brought meals to my house every single day for over 3 months while I recovered.
I have friends that have been more than willing to load and unload my wheelchair for me…over and over again so that we could shop together. They weren’t the least embarrassed to be out with me…at least if they were, they never let me know.
I have friends that have loved my children as their own.
I have friends that I know cried in private over me. But when they were with me, they held it together and were the coolest people in the world. No drama. No fuss. Just moving on with normal life and including me in it.
I have friends that let me know how they notice when people take the handicap spaces and don’t need them. I love that they notice!
I have people that come up to me and tell me how my story has changed their lives and inspired them to not give up.
I have friends who put up ramps when they know I am coming, who have given me their own bedrooms to sleep in because it is easier to get around in, and who have built ramps to the platforms in their churches when I come to speak. Do you know what that says to me?!!
Just yesterday, I had almost 10 people share an amazing electric bike apparatus for wheelchairs with me on Facebook. They were thinking of me! That humbles me so much.
I have some that have shunned me and hurt me, but God has filled those empty places over and over an over again. When Satan may use others to try to hurt and discourage, you just hang on. God WILL restore and fill those empty places over and over and over.
I believe the difference in whether we flip or flop is our perspective. If I only focus on those who have hurt me (and I truly do have hurts) it can consume my mind and depress me very quickly.
Thoughtless and cold people are out there, but, in my life, they are FAR outweighed by the loving and caring ones.
I can focus on the lack of handicap spaces, or I can focus on the fact that I am able to be out and enjoy shopping!
I can focus on the lack of accessibility at a venue (and I am a HUGE advocate for initiating change for others), or I can push my mind over that and just enjoy being with others.
I can focus on the heartless things others have said about me, or I can focus on those who are so kind and loving to me.
I can focus on what I can’t do, or I can focus on what I can do.
Do you see the difference? It makes all the difference in the world if you are going to become that “bitter cripple” we can so easily be stereotyped as, or we can become a testimony and living example of the goodness of God through our lives.
The lessons I have learned?
1. BE that kind of friend to others.
Don’t be the discourager. Be the encourager. Don’t be the critic. Be the compassionate one. Don’t be mean. Be a minister to others. Don’t close your eyes to those who make you uncomfortable. Open your heart to love them just as they are.
2. Don’t flop.
Flip this thing around and focus on all the wonderful people in your life. You WILL profit from that. I promise.
I hope you all have a wonderful day! Love you all!