As a woman, I am used to taking care of other people and forty years worth of callings has kept me busy dishing it out. But it was Ashley, my noble beauty and firstborn--the child who never grew up--who has depended on me all her life to eat, to move, to be her voice--that raised the question in my mind of who is serving who.
As a toddler, Ashley’s therapy incorporated 275 volunteers. The program required my attention every waking minute and Dale had to work four jobs to pay for it, so people assisted while they also did our laundry, cleaned our bathroom and, believe it or not, brought us dinner five nights a week for two years straight. Witnessing the joy of this self-appointed army as they watched her crawl or walk for the first time, I began to see things the way the volunteers saw them: Ashley was not “unfortunate”; nor did they see her as an “opportunity” or a “project”. Rather, they revered her as their “Teacher”, even “Mentor” in the ways of patience, endurance, and unconditional love.
That is when I began to wonder: what is it about society that makes “HELP” a four-letter word? Why do we treasure our “independence” so much that many of us would rather die than “become a burden”? How is it that we assume the right to serve our fellowman, but mysteriously, never seem to need help from anyone else?
The big news, that Ashley has spent her thirty-one years broadcasting (though she has never spoken a word), is that somebody has to be served in order for the rest of us to feel good about ourselves; somebody has to humble themselves so that the rest of us can grow; someone has to come to earth in challenging circumstances so that those around her can be proved.
Think on THIS: Even Heavenly Father expects us to serve -- Him! The LORD of the Universe asks for our help, allows our help, even commands our help. WHY does HE want OUR help?
Could it be because He knows all progress is based in Community and Reciprocity?
I love how Superman, while catching Lois Lane mid-tumble from a skyscraper, says: “Don’t worry, I’ve got you.”
Indeed, who HAS got who? Would Superman be Superman without people to rescue? Supergirl Ashley has saved me and a multitude of other people far more ordinary than she is during her lifetime of “dependence”. In her frequent conversation with the angels, I’m sure those heavenly pals smile and exchange knowing glances every time she benevolently refers to all of us--her personal army--as “The Givers”.
Mona muses inspirational every Sunday at Mona's Gospel Musings and preaches romance in marriage at Mona's Musings with a Hint of Romance. She is the mother of four plus three and the award-winning author of With Mine Own Hand: The Musical Account of Nephi. For a daily Hint of Romance, go to Mona's Musings on Facebook.
Photography from Dreamstime