Our daughter Anna, who has Down syndrome, just turned one. Children with these designer genes tend to be delayed on their development- sometimes up to two or three years in motor skills. Because of this, Anna has received physical therapy since she was about 3 weeks old. This entails setting goals for her and then working with her on small steps that help her work towards attaining those goals.
For the last 6 months we’ve been working with her on crawling. She’s not technically there yet, but just last week she started doing this bizarre one-shoulder army crawl. It’s not pretty but it works for her. I am one proud momma! ‘Official’ crawling, with the motor movements working together in the traditional way, may come for her… or that particular coordination may not. But she’s trying, she’s working hard, and by God! that little girl is getting around just fine.
It’s been truly a wonderful journey to help teach her little muscles the way to move. It’s taken time, energy, and lots of practice; and despite the fact that she’s still not ‘technically’ doing what we want for her… the end goal is the same- she’s getting around on her own. It may not look the way it’s supposed to (in fact she kind of looks like a wounded little bird hobbling about) but it’s progress.
And it warms my heart to no end to see her progress- no matter how bizarre it looks at times.
Because I don’t see the motions so much as I see her MOVING.
The first time I noticed her getting around, I didn’t see the way she was doing it incorrectly, I only saw that she was doing it.
Isn’t that the real goal after all?
So what’s the lesson here? It’s been interesting how her crawling progress has paralleled my own spiritual journey of late. There’s a goal, instructions, that God’s given me to accomplish (as I imagine He has given to you as well.) I have an idea of what it needs to look like and yet, despite practice and patience, my progress is anything but pretty or coordinated. In fact, my spiritual growth is downright ugly at times! It’s not regular, it’s not consistent, it’s not graceful, lovely, or efficient- it’s just plain bad. But it is progress! I get frustrated with myself at times, and Satan definitely tries to whisper that my advancements are stupid, worthless, and horribly done.
But, like my own personal pride in my daughter’s unlovely progress, so also must my heavenly Father be equally pleased with my ugly path.
I pray He sees that I am moving, I am being obedient… no matter how awkward my motions are in getting there.
Today I encourage you to MOVE. It doesn’t matter how unsightly or bizarre-looking the actions are! God wants you moving in whatever direction He’s set for you. He doesn’t care what it looks like, He only cares that you are, indeed, on the journey to get there.
So dear one…. move badly!