Thursday, April 12, 2012

Walking A Mile or Two In Her Shoes

There is a young lady in town who works at a restaurant Jeremiah and I frequent. We have seen her walking to and from work for the last couple years. She walks in heat, snow, wind, rain and all the elements we encounter in the Tri-Cities. She has an obvious disability and walks with a limp. She does not have a vehicle and the walk is well over 2 miles from the farthest point we have seen her to her place of employment. She is always friendly and working hard when we see her and has even worked her way up to a management position. This young lady could use every excuse in the book and live off of disability, but has chosen to persevere and live a "normal" and fulfilled life. It is clear that she has not let any of her physical or material set backs affect her getting to work and being a productive, hard working, pleasant member of society. Despite the fact that she must try twice as hard as the rest of us just to get to work, then stand on her feet all shift, and has faced obstacles many of us will never experience she has not let her body defeat her. I find this inspiring! Have you let your body, mind, or lack of material means defeat you? Do you listen to the aches, pains, thoughts, worries, insecurities, illnesses, lack of "things", or haters (I know I laughed when I used that word, too)? It can be hard to ignore those things, but when I see others can do it I know we all can. And the more we do it, the easier it will get.

When I think of people I know who are healthy, able bodied, and have no visible signs of a physical or cognitive impairment, yet who don't work I am stunned. I am not referring to people laid off who can't find work right now. I am referring to those who have no desire to work or look for every excuse to not get a job. Most people would rather be doing something more fun than working everyday, but there comes a sense of pride and fulfillment contributing to society and being able to live off your own means. We all have difficulties in life that make some days very hard to go to work. Having IC makes getting through the work day very hard when I don't feel well. But when I see people who don't let their set backs in life stop them from living I am inspired and motivated... and even more disappointed with those who don't try harder or care about the way their lives are going. Whether or not we let our excuses control us and ruin our full potential is up to us. Before thinking you can't do something, or simply choose not because of laziness or fear, try walking 2 miles in the shoes of someone with a disability. Thank God for your life and what you have been given. Life could have given you a much tougher deck of cards. I pray you don't have to learn the hard way to appreciate your life. I find this young woman's accomplishments to be far more inspiring than those I know who have a graduate degree or run their own business. In the words of America's icon Oprah, "You go girl!"

"Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome while trying to succeed."  - Booker T. Washington 

1 comment:

  1. This is SO great, and I completely agree. The Lord has given us this life and we need to make the best of it, with whatever we've been given.
    I look at my laziness, my former inability to see that my body is a temple and that by staying lazy and not trying to be healthier was really telling the Lord that I'm not thankful for my abled body. I'm doing my best now to rectify all the harm I've been doing over the years.
    Thanks for being encouraging! loves.