The Blue Crab

  • Oct. 5, 2017
  • #9244

God uses a little sticker in the shape of a blue crab to encourage Joni. 

Family Retreat - Blue Crab Sticker

Even though summer is behind us, I'm hanging on to the memories.

Hi, I'm Joni Eareckson Tada, and before summertime memories grow dim, I just have to tell you this was one amazing summer! As you know, all through July and August I was celebrating 50 years of God's faithfulness to me in this wheelchair. Wow, five decades of quadriplegia, most of it relying on God with every turn of the wheels of my chair, but summer was also pretty hard. It seems every season gets a little tougher with my new physical challenges always encroaching, always something new I need to adjust to. But God—oh my goodness, God—God has been so faithful to encourage me with every new day. Like when I was with our Joni and Friends team in Ohio earlier this summer. Ken and I spent the week at the Family Retreat in Shawnee Resort right down near the Ohio River.

It was constantly being “on,” if you know what I mean—constantly connecting, constantly talking to, praying with, loving on so many special-needs families. By the end of the week, Ken and I were wiped out. But on the last day as I was signing books and people’s Bibles, (because we were able to give every family who attended our “Beyond Suffering Bible.) anyway, near the end of this long line, (you know, with my pen in my mouth) I was ready to head to my room. I was exhausted; I needed a break.

But at the end of the line, Megan, a young woman with cerebral palsy, she wheeled up to me. Now through the week, I had really grown to love this spunky young woman with the winning smile, and so, for the time being, I shelved my weariness and gave her one-hundred percent of my attention. As we talked, I glanced down and noticed on her lapboard a little sticker in the shape of a Maryland blue crab. In fact, the crab was colored like the Maryland state flag, which I know so well. I said to her, “Megan, where did you get that little crab sticker?” I thought she had it there because, I don’t know, maybe she knew it was a blue crab that saved my life back on that fateful day. That little crab bit my sister's toe when I was face-down in the water, alerting her that I was in danger. But Megan answered that she put it there because, “I don’t know. My uncle happens to like crabs.” She had no idea how much a blue crab sporting the Maryland flag might mean to me! Well, when I gazed at that sticker, immediately I "heard" (now I didn’t really audibly hear God, I just felt God whisper) Joni, I saved you for such a time as this. That’s what I heard. As you would guess, tears began streaming. Maybe it was because I was so tired. But I choose to think that right there, on the last day of Family Retreat, at the end of a long day and an even longer line, God used that little sticker to remind me that there really are more important things in life than walking. Like all the ministry He’s accomplishing through Joni and Friends, including reaching out to dear Megan in her wheelchair! To God be the glory! Wow!

Well, I’d love for you to see a wonderful photo of Megan and me, and of course, definitely a snapshot of that little crab sticker that Ken did on his I-phone. I’ve posted both photos on my radio page today at joniandfriends.org. Again, that’s joniandfriends.org/radio. Finally, when something you treasure becomes a memory, doesn’t that memory become a treasure? So, in this new season, I wish that all things you treasure become the sweetest of memories because all good things come from the hand of our Savior.

Thanks for listening today on Joni and Friends.

© Joni and Friends

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