Last week, I was giving tours of our church to a bunch of second graders. Joining them were several special needs children. One girl is severely handicapped, and she can be a bit disruptive, especially if you're a second grader :)
Well, I love working with special needs kids. It's a blessing for me, and although I don't have any training in this area, I seem to get by pretty well. It's that way with Madison. She likes me, and I think she knows I like her. She smiles at me, and I know I am communicating with her. She puts my hands in hers and she and I clap together.
The tour had it's ups and downs, and when it was all over, one of our volunteers came up to me and said that it was clear Madison loved me. At that minute, I remembered a line from one of Henri Nouwen's books. He was writing about his own experience of working with people with special needs. He said that at a certain point, the relationship changes. "The God in him/her recognizes the God in me." And so it is with Madison and I. In her own special and unique way, she sees God in me. I see a joy in her that I can only long for, and I know that she is the beloved daughter of God. She is blessed!