Thursday, July 7, 2011

Shards of Heaven

I'm back. From Cooperstown, from vacation, but most of all, I believe,

from Heaven.

No, I didn't go into cardiac arrest and come back from the great beyond, or have a dove fly over my head like the Holy Spirit was lighting me on fire for God. while I have had those experiences, I believe God gives you the experience you need when you need it, and I could feel him working in different ways on this trip as opposed to others.

When I first heard about Reece's Rainbow, I admit I kind of rolled my eyes. I am not the same person I was two years ago, and Orphan Care was far from my niche, my second nature, etc. I doubted the power of one person with inspiration to move mountains. I'd say my first example of that was when a college student named Molly raised money, awareness, and just about everything in between to get a little boy named Aaron home to a family. Not only did she make a difference for that one little boy, but she made friends with one fantastic family. As I got the updates on the story through my mom, saw all the little miracles that surrounded our little group, and became seriously changed after visiting Eastern Europe myself, I inched my way in. In some ways, Sonya and the Hinz family were my Aaron and the Nalles. The child that kicked me into gear. The family that came along. One event leads to the next. I'm not who I was, and I wouldn't be anyone different.

When I first heard about the Reece's Rainbow get-together, I was downright giddy. I was pumped. Then reality (read: anxiety and fear) set in, and I wondered what it would REALLY be like. Obviously meeting Andrea and Reece would be fantastic. The reason for all of us doing what we were and becoming who we are. But what about the other people? Would there be any? There aren't near as many families in the North from RR as there are in the South. What would the kids think of me? Would the younger ones look up to me? Would the ones my age and older get me? Not many teens/young adults get me, my personality, my mission, my facebook posts :P

My family arrived a couple of days before the rest of the group would. We got the lay of the land and everything in between down pat, and welcomed Reece, Andrea and her younger son Owen with open arms on thursday. From that moment I realized there was a different click to this group- for being the founders and inspiration for so many, Andrea was just like the rest of us. She wasn't afraid to get right down in the grit and play with the kids, while at the same time being the face of a growing ministry. As more and more families started to arrive, it became apparent we were all in the same boat: families that followed a call to attempt an incredible task and had been blessed to make it through. I also began to realize something else: it took little to no effort to trust theses families. I quickly began to realize how truly close we were because of the bond Special Needs forms between companions- one of shameless love, of utter compassion, and total self-sacrifice for one another. I began to see the shards of heaven then.

Easily the #1 reason we were blessed to have the reunion held in New York was a place called Pathfinder Village. Pathfinder(s) is devoted entirely to helping people blessed with Down syndrome to flourish and thrive- and does so with complete triumph. We were blessed to hang out with many of the residents for two days, and I can honestly tell you no one can make you laugh, move you to tears, or change you as quickly as and completely as they do. They are the real shards of heaven, the little sign of what the happiness of love and heaven is like: one that has no fear, no bounds, no shame. Simple, selfless, love.


              My Dear friend Nick and my passionate Special Needs compatriot Taylor. Nick has been blessed with Down, and Taylor's got the heart to love those who have it.


                       Have you ever seen such pure and shameless joy?

                              The One and only, precious and spunky Reece Roberts!

                            A group of the residents from Pathfinders- never were there closer friends.

Shards of Heaven did indeed fall down on us there in our tiny mountain getaway. And we were blessed to be there to witness them.

3 comments:

  1. Couldn't have said it better myself(:

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  2. Caleb - so beautiful!!!! So very well written!!! Thank you!!!

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