In just a few weeks our new book will be out and Ken and I are so excited. Just what is the untold story? In many ways, it's my husband's. You see, when we first married, neither of us realized how quadriplegia would impact our life together. And then, my chronic pain was thrown into the mix. For Ken, all this was a huge test of our vows, as well as our faith. But no matter how horribly depressing and difficult things were (we call those days "the tired, middle years" of our marriage), we clung to God's grace moment-by-moment. It meant that when I got cancer, we were able to remarkably rise to the challenge. After all, God had proved himself through the toughest times in our marriage and, like Samuel the Prophet, we were able to say, "Thus far has the Lord helped us" (1 Samuel 7:12). This is a book that, I know, will encourage you to say the same – be looking for it in our store in just a few weeks!
Forty years ago when the US Supreme Court legalized abortion, people assumed it was only a private matter for women alone. But not so. The Roe vs. Wade decision has had a devastating impact on Americans with disabilities. To explain this, I recorded a video for the Americans United for Life Legal Conference recently held at the National Press Club in Washington DC. Take a moment and watch this video which details how dismantling the rights of an unborn child has impacted newborns with disabilities, people in comas, the uninsured, and the elderly – then please, share it with your Facebook friends!
Lorie and Andrew are parents of Ben, with spina bifida, and 3 other siblings. “We were given a Family Retreat DVD,” says Lorie. “My oldest watched and started to cry. ‘Mom, these people are just like us. We’ve got to go!’” Lorie had concerns as they arrived at their first Family Retreat. Who would care for Ben? Would they be competent? “Only God could’ve known our needs so perfectly and filled them so completely! I was most surprised by our STM,” said Lorie. “Stephanie is a pediatric nurse at the children’s hospital where we live. She has been an amazing fit! “At Family Retreat, we’re around people just like us, who have the same struggles. In my Woman-to-Woman group, God has peeled back the layers of hurt as we share. I know these new friends will continue to pray for me, love me, and hold me steadfast even after we all go home.”
Have you signed up to attend Family Retreat? Registration is now open! Apply today!
Family Retreat registration for the 2013 season opens today for special needs families and STM volunteers! Visit our Family Retreat page to view the Retreat schedule and learn what it’s like to attend as a family or serve as a Short-Term Missionary. And if you know of a special-needs family who could be blessed by attending, pass on the information! These wonderful Retreats fill up fast so sign up today!
Kevin Natale, a vocational intern at Joni and Friends, is a recent graduate of Biola University. He’s also been a quadriplegic for 19 years, after a senseless shooting. After rehab, Kevin turned to drugs to numb the pain of living life in a wheelchair. But after 10 long years of substance abuse, Kevin turned it all over to Jesus Christ – his pain, his disability, his future. In return, God has taught him deep truths about forgiveness, about...
The most extreme afflictions happen to those with disabilities. Cause 4 Life is on a mission to fight those injustices. Watch the journey that some interns as they serve in Uganda and answer the prayers of Doreen and her daughter Veronica.
For families affected by disability, life can often consist of one challenge after another. It’s why every year Joni and Friends asks you to join us for our Heart for the Disabled ministry. With your notes, bible verses, poems, and gift cards you can encourage five families with special needs. We’ve been called to love one another with the love of Christ, so mail in your notes to Joni and Friends and we’ll make sure to send them to the families just in time for Valentine’s Day. And if you’d like to learn more about Heart for the Disabled and the families, visit our radio page.
Thank you for listening to Joni and Friends radio this week to hear about 5 special needs families that you can encourage this Valentine’s Day. Cards have already been arriving to bless these special families! If you’d like to mail a note , please send it to Joni and Friends as soon as possible; we’ll bundle up all the cards and gifts to deliver to these families just in time for Valentine’s Day! In case you missed any details, please listen online to meet these 5 families:
Day 1 - Joffre and Kathy
Day 2 - Sara
Day 3 - Josh and Jackie
Day 4 - Kim Family
Day 5 - Ryan and Lisa
Happy New Year! What better way is there to kick-start 2013 than by digging into God’s Word? This year, Joni and Friends is happy to offer you resources that will encourage you into a deeper walk with Christ! Are you committing to daily Bible reading? It’s not too late to join Joni and Ken as they read through the Bible chronologically. Just download the Bible reading schedule and let us know that you’ll be joining. Or are you looking for a devotional that gives flesh, breath, and emotion to theology? In Joni's award-winning daily devotional books Pearls of Great Price and Diamonds in the Dust, she shares what God has taught her from her wheelchair and through His Word. These meditations uncover eternal truths waiting to transform the events of your life into facets that catch and reflect God's glory. Are you ready? Let’s dig into God’s Word this year...
Working towards her Master’s Degree in Special Education, Rachel Seiler has been sensing the Lord calling her into disability ministry. Living with disability herself has increased her faith in God and given her a love for others who struggle. But where to begin? Uganda! “I’ve never been on a missions trip outside of the U.S.!” said Rachel, “But Joni and Friends was the first place I applied. For two weeks in Africa, Rachel served as a Joni and Friends intern...
Watch Rachel in a sneak peek of the new Cause 4 Life Love. Heal. Defend. video web series that will begin airing on our blog later this month!