Thursday, December 06, 2007

GOD LIVES UNDER THE BED: update

I posted this Tuesday, August 29, 2006 not knowing if it was a true story. Then last Friday I received an email stating this.


Hi Iggy,
Just thought I'd let you know that this is, in fact, a true story. It was written by Kevin's sister 15 years ago. She read it again today at Kevin's memorial service. He passed away on Tuesday after a 13 month battle with colon cancer. But in usual Kevin style, he never complained and the last words he said were "Stay Home. Jesus is coming". And He did. Kevin will be deeply missed by many people. He touched so many lives and we are so gad that he is with his Father.
God Bless.



I went back to re-read the post and found myself weeping (as I remember the first time I read it) yet this time with the realization that it was a very real story about a very real person.



I took a while to respond as I did not really know how to, yet sent this back to "Bonnie" who sent me the email.



Bonnie,

I am so sad to hear of Kevin’s passing, but rejoice that he is with the Lord whom he loved so much. It was quite a while ago I posted that story and with many stories out there I did not know that it was real or not…. But it did touch my heart and I knew I had to share it.

I am very blessed that you took the time to share with me that it was a true story. I am more blessed as I re-read the story and then your email and found myself weeping with both sadness and joy for Kevin… and even though I never knew Kevin, I have seen many other people with handicaps who also seemed to have the same innocent faith that Kevin had and now lives in all the fullness of.

May I share this email with my readers… my only reason is to share that we need sometimes to stop and realize that Jesus’ words are so true, that we can only truly come to God with faith of a child.

Again, my prayers are with you in your earthly lost, but I know that it is the Kingdom of God’s gain… and Kevin was greeted with so much rejoicing as our Lord Jesus held him in the most loving embraced and of all people the words would be, “Well done my good and faithful servant… my friend… my brother… come I have much to share with you here.”

May the Lord of all blessings give you the Grace and comfort you need in this time.

Blessings,
iggy


Please send a note here on this post or an email to me to pass on to Bonnie if this story blessed you in some way. I know the family would love to here it.




GOD LIVES UNDER THE BED

Don't start reading this one until you've got more than 3 or 4 minutes to just "scan" over it.
It deserves a bit of time for some reflection. I envy Kevin. My brother Kevin thinks God lives under his bed. At least that's what I heard him say one night.

He was praying out loud in his dark bedroom, and I stopped to listen, "Are you there, God?" he said. "Where are you? Oh, I see. Under the bed..."I giggled softly and tiptoed off to my own room. Kevin's unique perspectives are often a source of amusement. But that night something else lingered long after the humor. I realized for the first time the very different world Kevin lives in.

Kevin was born 30 years ago, mentally disabled as a result of difficulties during labor. Apart from his size (he's 6-foot-2), there are few ways in which he is an adult. He reasons and communicates with the capabilities of a 7-year-old, and he always will. He will probably always believe that God lives under his bed, that Santa Claus is the one who fills the space under our tree every Christmas and that airplanes stay up in the sky because angels carry them.

I remember wondering if Kevin realizes he is different.


Is he ever dissatisfied with his monotonous life?


Up before dawn each day, off to work at a workshop for the disabled, home to walk our cocker spaniel, return to eat his favorite macaroni-and-cheese for dinner, and later to bed.

The only variation in the entire scheme is laundry, when he hovers excitedly over the washing machine like a mother with her newborn child. He does not seem dissatisfied.

He lopes out to the bus every morning at 7:05, eager for a day of simple work. He wrings his hands excitedly while the water boils on the stove before dinner, and he stays up late twice a week to gather our dirty laundry for his next day's laundry chores.

And Saturdays-oh, the bliss of Saturdays! That's the day my Dad takes Kevin to the airport to have a soft drink, watch the planes land, and speculate loudly on the destination of each passenger inside. "That one's goin' to Chi-car-go!" Kevin shouts as he claps his hands. His anticipation is so great he can hardly sleep on Friday nights. And so goes his world of daily rituals and weekend field trips. He doesn't know what it means to be discontent. His life is simple. He will never know the entanglements of wealth of power, and he does not care what brand of clothing he wears or what kind of food he eats. His needs have always been met, and he never worries that one day they may not be. His hands are diligent. Kevin is never so happy as when he is working. When he unloads the dishwasher or vacuums the carpet, his heart is completely in it.


He does not shrink from a job when it is begun, and he does not leave a job until it is finished. But when his tasks are done, Kevin knows how to relax.

He is not obsessed with his work or the work of others. His heart is pure. He still believes everyone tells the truth, promises must be kept, and when you are wrong, you apologize instead of argue. Free from pride and unconcerned with appearances, Kevin is not afraid to cry when he is hurt, angry or sorry.

He is always transparent, always sincere.

And he trusts God.

Not confined by intellectual reasoning, when he comes to Christ, he comes as a child. Kevin seems to know God - to really be friends with Him in a way that is difficult for an "educated" person to grasp. God seems like his closest companion.

In my moments of doubt and frustrations with my Christianity I envy the security Kevin has in his simple faith.

It is then that I am most willing to admit that he has some divine knowledge that rises above my mortal questions.

It is then I realize that perhaps he is not the one with the handicap . . I am.

My obligations, my fear, my pride, my circumstances - they all become disabilities when I do not trust them to God's care.

Who knows if Kevin comprehends things I can never learn? After all, he has spent his whole life in that kind of innocence, praying after dark and soaking up the goodness and love of God. And one day, when the mysteries of heaven are opened, and we are all amazed at how close God really is to our hearts, I'll realize that God heard the simple prayers of a boy who believed that God lived under his bed.

Kevin won't be surprised at all!

1 comment:

Bruce said...

Great story. Made me cry.

I have an 18yr old daughter with Down Syndrome so this story touches close to home.

Bruce