I remember very well what my mom told me others were telling her—that nothing good would ever come from me, that it was not worth it to bring me to the school just for me to sit there and listen. I got sick when I was a year and a half old. The doctors told my parents to leave me at the hospital because I would never be anything. But my parents were brave and they didn’t do it. For that, I will always be grateful to them!
At school there were many, too, who said I would never be anything. I especially remember one boy from elementary school who laughed at the way I looked and walked, and also about my wheelchair. Because of him I had days when I didn’t want to go to school. Even though I didn’t know to whom, I would pray that our car would break down so that my mom couldn’t bring me to school. Not often, but sometimes my prayers were answered! Those were happy days, because I didn’t ned to hear the teasing. I liked to learn, but it was painful to hear others laughing at me, even though I told my parents (and myself) that I was strong and the laughing didn’t matter. But it did matter. The feeling that I was nothing only continued to grow.
After elementary school we moved to Riga. I graduated from high school and went to university. And I was a good student. That was the way my parents and I could to prove to the world that I was like everyone else—I could be in a wheelchair and still study successfully. But the feeling that I would never be anything didn’t go away. One of the reasons why I was studying was because I wanted to suppress this feeling and prove to the world that I could do it.
During my first year at the university, I met a guy who started asking me different questions about the meaning of life and my beliefs. At that point I was not sure about what I believed in, and I was not even sure I believed myself. Then he told me about Christ and brought me to church. The pastor talked about God, who accepts me unconditionally. It touched my heart deeply. I understood that God loved me for the person I was, that He died because of my sins and paid the penalty in my place not because I had achieved anything, but simply because I was His child and precious in His eyes the way I was. It is written in the Bible in Psalm 139: 13 – 14, “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb…” and in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” I cried from happiness! Finally, somebody accepted me as I was and I didn’t have to prove anything to Him!
On the outside nothing big changed. I continued to study. But changes happened inside of me and in my attitude. I started to enjoy my life, studies and myself more. Later, I got involved in a Christian student group called „Agape Students”. There my journey from “you will never be anything” to “you already are someone – dear and valuable” started. I am still on this journey. Every day I need to choose to believe and live with the awareness that I am precious to God, not with the feeling of “you will never be anything.” But now I know the truth and I know the right choice even though I need to remind myself of it. Of course there are days when everything feels like the old days, when it was hard to live. But now I know how to fight these feelings. I am not so weak and vulnerable anymore, because I have the One who gives me strength. A security and confidence that I never knew before has come into my life.
Have you gone through similar challenges?
If you have some questions feel free to contact me. I will be happy to share more from my experience with you.
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