This family with special-needs children would be encouraged by some uplifting cards, letters and small gifts to let them know someone is thinking and praying for them.
Hey, it's Heart for the Disabled week here at Joni and Friends.
Thanks for joining me, Joni Eareckson Tada, as we begin one of my favorite weeks of the year. This is when I asked you to take a few minutes to write a note of encouragement to families with special-needs children who attended last summer's Family Retreats. Many of you have done this before. Last year beat all records; you friends really responded and it has meant the world to these people who receive, well, Valentine's cards, letters, notes with scriptures, words of a hymn, inspirational poems. So get out your pencil and pad of paper, because I want to tell you about Randy and Monica and their three children, all of whom have disabilities. Chloe and Kara, both of whom are nearly teenagers, have mood and anxiety disorders. That’s a handful right there for Randy and Monica.
But there’s more. Their adopted little guy, Micah, has cerebral palsy, uses a wheelchair and a feeding tube, and he is non-verbal. Micah requires a lot of attention, a lot of time, effort and love. But that’s okay; Randy and Monica have more than enough love to go around. But even that has been put to the test lately – because Monica has been in and out of the hospital with a yet undiagnosed illness that causes great pain. It has limited this mother’s abilities to be the mother and caregiver that she so longs to be. Yes, there’s disappointment, but what made it harder is when the family was in a car accident that totaled their handicap-equipped van. They loved that van. It had all the specialized features so that Micah could be comfortable and safe when traveling with the family. That wheelchair van was the main mode of transportation and without it, the family simply can’t take little Micah out. It’s just been so hard. It has been a very difficult season for this special-needs family and they are in such great need of a few uplifting words or a reminder that someone is praying. Yes, they know the Lord Jesus, and yes, their faith is secure, but sometimes when one thing piles on top of another, well you get the picture.
So, perhaps you could send a favorite poem or copy the words to your favorite hymn. An appropriate scripture would certainly be welcomed, or you could have your children or grandkids color a greeting card with crayons. If you feel so led, put in a gift card to Subway or McDonald’s or Baskin-Robbins; treat them to a lunch, or an ice cream dessert (I know that will really lift their spirits). Whichever you do, direct your note to Randy and Monica, parents of Chloe, Cara, spelled C-A-R-A, and little Micah in his wheelchair. And don’t worry, you can always go to joniandfriends.org/radio and get the spellings of everyone’s names. Send your Valentine encouragement to Randy and Monica in care of Joni and Friends, P.O. Box 3333, Agoura Hills, CA 91376 – again, we’ve got the address also posted on my radio page, so you can always get all the details there.
We will gather all the cards and letters and gifts and poems for this special-needs family and send it off to them in time for Valentine's Day. On February 14th, Randy and Monica are going to receive a big surprise box of all your letters and gifts – and I can just imagine how the girls and Micah will squeal with delight to see so many colorful notes and cards and little gifts. The book of Hebrews says encourage one another daily, and elsewhere it says that we should do good to all people, especially those in the household of faith. So do that today by encouraging this special-needs family as part of Heart for the Disabled.
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