After her daughter, Penny, was born with Down syndrome, Amy Julia Becker admits to feeling grief and fear intermingled with the natural joy of having a new baby. As someone who’d always been devoted to her Christian faith, she engaged in some emotional and spiritual wrestling about how Down syndrome fit into God’s plan.
A friend told Becker that when she first heard the baby’s diagnosis, she was reminded of the Bible verse, “Whoever receives this child, receives me.” Those words gave Becker a new perspective that would develop even further over time.
In her Christopher Award-winning memoir A Good and Perfect Gift, Becker notes that she eventually came to see Penny not as a diagnosis, but simply as her daughter. She and her husband, Peter, came to a new understanding of parental love, God’s grace, and finding strength in weakness.
Sometimes the situations we initially perceive as burdens can actually be blessings in disguise.
Whoever welcomes one such child in My name welcomes Me. (Matthew 18:5)
Open my heart to children with challenges, Messiah.