Unseen Challenges

It is interesting to be an observer of the world. I watch and see people willingly open a door for a person in a wheelchair. I have seen an entire row of cars stop and wait as an elderly person with a mobility challenge struggles to get across a highway safely. I have witnessed strangers offer an arm to assist a person who is visibly impaired. These simple acts of grace and giving lift my heart and give me hope. Yet, I see these same people get angry, upset, and judgmental if the see a person who does not exhibit the outward signs of a physical challenge take advantage of a handicap spot, even if they have the appropriate license or window sticker.

Twice in my life I have been listed as a person with a disability. 26 years ago with my heart condition I would have had difficulty walking the stairs to the sanctuary without having to stop because I was getting light headed. With my current diagnosis of end stage kidney disease the Social Security Administration offers me every quarter an opportunity to go on full disability. Yet, at no time would anyone notice any external evidence of a disability or physical challenge. I wonder how many people we see are walking around wounded and hurting and show no signs of a condition or symptom that would in any way limit them. Think a cancer patient who is undergoing extensive radiation or chemo therapy who would find walking or taking the stairs difficult What about those with mental conditions that make their decision making difficult in a way that they need to draw upon assistance.  

That is it. Nothing here except to notice our judgments. I would suggest we begin with a curious mind rather than be quick to judge what others are going through. There is so much of what is happening to others we cannot see or imagine. Without the judgment and the benefit of Grace we can allow others to simply be.