Saturday, January 29, 2011

A Happy Heart

We have a little saying around our home that is often said when we need to keep life in perspective, “Because a grateful heart is a…”  and the boys always shout the ending, “HAPPY HEART!”  

Today I was thinking of yet another reason to have a happy heart, something that is easy to take for granted in our country which is the land of the free and the home of the brave. That reason is: the freedom to be who God made us.

Black or white.  Young or old.  Tall or short.  Blond or brunette.  Catholic or Jew.

This hit me in a fresh way a few days ago when I was reminded of the shocking and sickening statistic of over 70,000 of a particular group of people that were killed during Hitler’s reign.  These were not Jews (though that statistic is also staggering and sickening) but rather fellow Germans who were deemed “imperfect” by Hitler’s standards.  

This definition included anyone who suffered from deafness, blindness, mental or physical disability or any other birth defect you could imagine.  Hitler had actually commissioned a large team of doctors and staff working in all the medical care fields to “dispose of” (i.e., murder) any person that had imperfections in his dream to create a “perfect race”.

Some of these commissioned medical workers went as far as to visit the homes of people with new babies, check them over for defects and take them away (under the guise of doing further test to help the child) to kill them or put them in secret facilities with other “defected” children.

What really brings this sad piece of our world history home to me is that my son, Judah, would have no doubt been taken.

He was born with a birth defect of a cleft lip (that was easily repaired with a surgery when he was three months old).  After being reminded of this dark evil that happened many miles away and many years ago, I held my baby boy a little bit tighter today.  I watched him with a greater sense of wonder and joy.  I thought to myself while he did the things that normally would drive me a little crazy, “Thank God for this kid.  Thank God for his amazing life.”

Our precious Judah on the day he was born.
And thank God that we can raise our family in a land that is truly free because of the brave that defend our country.  The brave that stand up for the rights of children, both born and unborn.  The brave that advocate for people with special needs.  The brave that live out God’s unconditional love to people of all races, religions and physical/mental abilities.

Thank God I can hold my son everyday without fear of him being taken away.  That is why my heart is thankful…and happy.
Judah at 3 months, the day of his surgery
Love this moment: Gideon (20 mo.) wanted to be just like Jude and asked to wear tape over his lip too when his brother got home from the hospital.
Reminded me of how Jesus showed us his love by becoming human and feeling our pain.
Still buddies today-brothers Gideon (4) and Judah (3).

5 comments:

  1. Aww this is soo beautiful and loving. Thank you for sharing your thoughts today Tara!

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  2. Your welcome, thanks for reading!

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  3. Tara,

    I just found this today and was so blessed by it! Your heart is so pure and sweet. The words ring true and sure to everyone who reads it I'm sure. Be blessed in the same way and more than in all the ways you are a blessing to both your family and friends!

    Love,
    Josie

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  4. Tara,

    I remember having this very same thought a few years ago when I was reading a series of books about WWII. Not many people stop to think about what it would have meant for their own families if they had lived under Hitlers reign back then. And I think alot of people forge that it was much more than just the Jews that Hitler persecuted. I remember thinking back then that my precious and amazing son Kaleb would srely have been killed as well because he is autistic. It broke my heart to think of it then, but like you, it also made me immensly greatful to live where and when I do. My son is an amazing blessing not only to my family, but to many others as well. I hate to think of what this world would have missed ot on without himin it, and it makes me sad to think that this world did indeed miss out on much as a result of those who did lose their lives to Hilter. I need to than you for this reminder, today of all days. Not just for reminding me how blessed I am to still have my Kaleb here, but also for another matter. I just found out today that my grandfater was diagnosed with ALS, and will likely be dead within the year. I was very saddened by this news, and still am sad, but you gave me a new perspective as well. As I'm sure you know well, it was not just cildren with disabilities who were killed. Hitler was also well known to do away with the elderly that he felt had in effect outlived their usefulness. All four of my surviving grandparents would surely have fallen into this category, as they are all in frail health a this point. So now, I'm greatful that I still have this year in which to say goodbye, and (hopefully) to show him the truth of Jesus' love for him. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this matter!
    Love,
    NIKKI

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  5. Josie, THANK you!

    Nikki, WOW. Thanks for sharing all this on your heart and I'm so sorry to hear about your grandfather. I wrote this down so I can remember to be in prayer for him!

    Hitler represents to me the way the devil sees us and wants to destroy all life while God LOVES each of us, with all our differences, ages, looks--everything so precious to Him. You and your family are precious too, Nikki! Hugs! T

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