Friday, June 6, 2008

Siblings Rock the World!

This speech given by Soeren Palumbo, a graduating senior, to his high school peers is a well-crafted and heartfelt call to action from a brother whose mentally challenged sister has taught him a lot. I give him credit for passing these life lessons on to others who have not had the privilege and benefit of loving someone with special needs. He defines discrimination against others especially those who cannot defend themselves. He does it graciously and unequivocally.

If you ever wonder why God allows disability, Soeren gives one answer. My daughter, Allie, is learning this too. She has said on more than one occasion that she wouldn't change her brother. "Life would be boring without autism." She also realizes that it has shaped who she is in terms of patience, tolerance, and maturity.  

I watched the movie Molly last night by myself. My family--although they are mostly out of town this week anyway--have grown weary of the disabled flick-a-thon. Not me. The brother in this story grew up mostly embarrassed of his sister who had autism. They develop a friendship when she miraculously gains mental capacity from an experimental procedure. As the progress wanes, he has to relearn what personhood and love really are. He learns it from a learning disabled orderly at the institution where his sister lives and from his sister. 

What if the real miracle cure is acceptance?

You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye. Matthew 7:4-6

However, the LORD your God...turned the curse into a blessing for you, because the LORD your God loves you. Deuteronomy 23:4-6

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. Romans 8:27-29

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