Friday, May 19, 2006
Here's a fresh new perspective on love...
This morning at Smily's I saw this article on Nick Vujicic. I thought it might be worth considering what life might be like without some of the tremendous gifts we take for granted.
Think about what you do every day, and the trivial little things you complain about... now read this article.
....To count our hurt, pain and struggle as nothing but pure joy? As my parents were Christians, and my Dad even a Pastor of our church, they knew that verse very well. However, on the morning of the 4th of December 1982 in Melbourne (Australia), the last two words on the minds of my parents was "Praise God!". Their firstborn son had been born without limbs! There were no warnings or time to prepare themselves for it. The doctors we shocked and had no answers at all! There is still no medical reason why this had happened and Nick now has a Brother and Sister who were born just like any other baby.
The whole church mourned over my birth and my parents were absolutely devastated. Everyone asked, "if God is a God of Love, then why would God let something this bad happen to not just anyone, but dedicated Christians?" My Dad thought I wouldn't survive for very long, but tests proved that I was a healthy baby boy just with a few limbs missing.
Understandably, my parents had strong concern and evident fears of what kind of life I'd be able to lead. The first biggest hurdle was for my parents to be at peace and trusting that God was in control. It took a number of months of tears, questions and grief before that complete overtook their hearts. God provided them strength, wisdom and courage through those early years and soon after that I was old enough to go to school.
There are a few people who assume that because of my physical disability that it meant that I'd also be mentally disabled. The law in Australia didn't allow me to be integrated into a main-stream school because of my physical disability. God did miracles and gave my Mom the strength to fight for the law to be changed. I was one of the first disabled students to be integrated into a main-stream school.
I liked going to school, and just try to live life like everyone else, but it was in my early years of school where I encountered uncomfortable times of feeling rejected, weird and bullied because of my physical difference. It was very hard for me to get used to, but with the support of my parents, I started to develop attitudes and values which helped me overcome these challenging times. I knew that I was different but on the inside I was just like everyone else. There were many times when I felt so low that I wouldn't go to school just so I didn't have to face all the negative attention. I was encouraged by my parents to ignore them and to try start making friends by just talking with some kids. Soon the students realized that I was just like them, and starting there God kept on blessing me with new friends.
There were times when I felt depressed and angry because I couldn't change the way I was, or blame anyone for that matter. I went to Sunday School and learnt that God loves us all and that He cares for you. I understood that love to a point as a child, but I didn't understand that if God loved me why did He make me like this? Is it because I did something wrong? I thought I must have because out of all the kids at school, I'm the only weird one. I felt like I was a burden to those around me and the sooner I go, the better it'd be for everyone. I wanted to end my pain and end my life at a young age, but I am thankful once again, for my parents and family who were always there to comfort me and give me strength.
Due to my emotional struggles I had experienced with bullying, self esteem and loneliness, God has implanted a passion of sharing my story and experiences to help others cope with whatever challenge they have in their life and let God turn it into a blessing. To encourage and inspire others to live to their fullest potential and not let anything get in the way of accomplishing their hopes and dreams.
As I grew older God continued to prepare my heart and teach me to seek Him. One of the first lessons that I have learnt was not to take things for granted. I had that wake up call around the age of twelve and realised just how much I was blessed with. I take my foot for granted, my family and all blessings that God had freely given and I still complain? I came across;
Romans 8:28 - "And we know that in all things God works for the best for those who love Him."
That verse spoke to my heart and convicted me to the point where that I know that there is no such thing as luck, chance or coincidence that these "bad" things happen in our life. In;
James 1:3&4 - "...know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything."
I had complete peace knowing that God won't let anything happen to us in our life unless He has a good purpose for it all. I completely gave my life to Christ at the age of fifteen after reading John 9. Jesus said that the reason the man was born blind was "so that the works of God may be revealed through Him." I truly believed that God would heal me so I could be a great testimony of His Awesome Power. Later on I was given the wisdom to understand that if we pray for something, if it's God's will, it'll happen in His time. If it's not God's will for it to happen, then I know that He has something better. I now see that Glory revealed as He is using me just the way I am and in ways others can't be used.
I am now twenty-one years old and have completed a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Financial Planning and Accounting. I am also a motivational speaker and love to go out and share my story and testimony wherever opportunities become available. I have developed talks to relate to and encourage students through topics that challenge today's teenagers. I am also a speaker in the corporate sector. For more information on Nick's presentations go to "Nick's Ministry".
In recent years, I have learnt to become independent and can now take care of all my personal needs. I can do everything from brushing my teeth, combing my hair, dressing up, taking care of my personal hygiene and even shaving. I get around the house by jumpin' around and, outside the house, I get around in an electric wheelchair. I love to swim, fish and play soccer. I have a passion for reaching out to youth and keep myself available for whatever God wants me to do, and wherever He leads, I follow.
I have many dreams and goals that I have set to achieve in my life. I want to become the best witness I can be of God's Love and Hope, to become an international inspirational speaker and be used as a vessel in both Christian and non-Christian venues. I want to become financially independent by the age of 25, through real estate investments, to modify a car for me to drive and to be interviewed and share my story on the "Oprah Winfrey Show"! Writing several best-selling books has been one of my dreams and I hope to finish writing my first by the end of the year. It will be called "No Arms, No Legs, No Worries!"
You might think these goals are too far-fetched. However, I believe that if you have the desire and passion to do something, and if it's God's will, you will achieve it in good time. As humans, we continually put limits on ourselves for no reason at all! What's worse is putting limits on God who can do all things. We put God in a "box". The awesome thing about the Power of God, is that if we want to do something for God, instead of focusing on our capability, concentrate on our availability for we know that it is God through us and we can't do anything without Him. Once we make ourselves available for God's work, guess whose capabilities we rely on? God's!
"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." Philippians 4:13
God has a Great Purpose for your life! As far as your unanswered prayers, remember that God is Faithful. What are we to do when we are seeking but not finding?
Jeremiah 29:12 - "Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you," declares the Lord...
Take courage my friend for the Battle is the Lord's and I urge you to keep striving for the truth. For it is the truth that will set you free and the Peace of God that surpasses all understanding will reign in your heart. May the Lord Bless you as you diligently seek Him and grant you Godly Wisdom and Strength through your journey.
If you know of an audience which may benefit from hearing Nick's story please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org - Have a look and see if Nick is speaking in your local area!