As we move into the new year—how can it possibly be 2020?!—this poem by Howard Thurman, an African-American theologian, educator, and civil rights leader, seems to be the perfect jumping off point for reflection:

The Work of Christmas

When the song of the angels is stilled,

When the star in the sky is gone,

When the kings and the princes are home,

When the shepherds are back with their flocks,

The work of Christmas begins:

To find the lost,

To heal the broken

To feed the hungry,

To release the prisoner,

To rebuild the nations,

To bring peace among people,

To make music in the heart.

As I reflected on this poem over the past several days, the proverbial light bulb suddenly switched on in a brain that’s been dimmed by the too-muchness of Christmas. The “work of Christmas” of which the poet speaks is what we do every day as we parent children (and adult children) with disabilities.

We not only find the lost, we scoop them up and make them a part of who we are. We love and care for those the wider community would turn away from without our emphatic, daily shout: My child has beauty! My child has worth! My child has purpose!

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Source: Special Needs Parenting- Key Ministry

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