There's a wonderful young man at our church. Andy Cole. Andy is a beautiful person. He is always smiling and loves to talk to people. Andy loves to sing and he devours books from the church library. Andy has a full life. You can't spend more than three minutes with Andy without feeling the love of God.
That is, if you understand God's standards.
Andy will never win a track race. Andy will not be president of the United States. Andy will not receive a recording contract. But Andy is one of God's most precious treasures. Andy has a great ministry.
You see, Andy reminds us on a daily basis that God loves all of us. He loves us when we are at our best and he also loves us when we are at our worst. He loves those that pose for the cover of Christianity Today and he loves those of us who hide from taking family portraits.
God looks down at his creations and is so proud when we resist evil. He pokes his chest out and punches one of the angels to say - "Did you see that? That's my child!"
God is disappointed when we do wrong but he's always faithful to say, "Awe, come on....You can do it. You are my child! Get back in there. Try again. I love you!"
So many things have happened this summer. But every Sunday when I enter church I look for Andy. I've sat behind him and listened as he struggled to sing along with a chorus. I've watched while he shifted his head in agreement with the sermon. I've prayed for him when he was coughing and having a hard time breathing.
Andy is multi-handicapped. He sits in one position in his wheelchair, barely able to move his head and hands. But...Andy is my greatest inspiration! He reminds me that God's love is based on what God sees and not what we see. God's love is based on the inner self not on the ability of our body.
I've watched Andy's parents, Charlene and Don. They laugh with Andy and help him interact with others. They hold his hands when they pray. Dad will gently rest his arm on the back of the wheelchair and look at Andy with a father's pride. After church they patiently load him into the van talking him through every move.
That's God's love. I want that kind of love. And guess what - those eyes, the eyes of an adoring parent. That's God's eyes.
Have you failed at some task today? Do you feel less than perfect? Are you struggling to get through the day?
Remember that he has touched everyone in a large church. He is making a difference in the lives of those around him. If God can do that for Andy - how much will he also love you!
Thank you Andy - you are the best !
God loves you,