No Handicap Before God

May 8, 2000
by Michael Steckel

Judges 3:15 – Again the Israelites cried out to the Lord and he gave them a deliverer — Ehud, a left-handed man, the son of Gera the Benjamite. The Israelites sent him with tribute to Eglon king of Moab. (NIV)

Sometimes I wonder why it takes me so long to realize things that seem so simple. My brother was born blind and retarded. Because of this, he needed special attention growing up. I am ashamed to say that as I look back I did not help much in that area. I would much rather have run off and played with my friends than stayed or be seen with my brother.

Now that I have matured, I do not see his handicap as something that should be hidden away. Through him I have learned so much about caring for others and loving people for who they are — not what they may or may not be able to do.

Ehud was left-handed, which was looked down upon as a handicap during the period in which he lived. Yet God called him to deliver Israel from their enemy. He used what looked to be a handicap, and turned it into an advantage, which served God's will. There is no such thing as a handicapped person before God. He can use all people for his purpose. It is we who brand people handicapped and then treat them badly. If God can use anybody, then this should be sending us a message. We should not treat people differently, but embrace them and encourage them.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, we pray that we may not look just with our eyes but with our hearts when we see others. May we see people for who they really are. May we embrace them as brothers and sisters, just as you have embraced us. In Jesus' name. Amen.

About the author:

Michael Steckel
Fairbanks, Alaska, USA

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