By Jerry Borton
I was born with Cerebral Palsy and now use a power wheelchair. I am thankful for the laws that require public places to reserve parking spaces that can accommodate my van and wheelchair lift. My thankful attitude goes south quickly when I come upon a car parked in a handicapped space that does not display the necessary permit or tag.
I Don’t Belong Here
I finally had to come to the point of surrendering my anger and frustration to God because I could not be trusted to react in a manner worthy of the God I serve. I then went through a time where, instead of feeling angry and frustrated, I felt disillusioned and isolated when I found someone illegally parking in a handicapped space. I felt as if society didn’t want me and I didn’t belong.
Now when I encounter this situation I still feel some frustration or isolation, but I am reminded of the Scripture that says we are aliens in this world, sojourners in a foreign land (Ephesians 2:19). I really don’t belong here. But, by grace, there is a place just for me. The place that will finally be home, the place that will finally be fully accessible, the place where I will finally fully belong is Heaven.
Home Where I Belong
In that place I will have a new body. More importantly I will have a new heart—one that fully hungers for God. He is preparing a place for me. Part of the new Heaven and new earth means there will be no more need for reserved parking places. All the things that hinder me here—my disability, pride, insecurity, and lusts—will all be gone.
Here’s the thing: you don’t belong here either. But because Jesus rose from the dead, we can have hope! Here’s why:
Jesus’ resurrection means we can trust that there is another day coming when all the disabilities and suffering of this life will be gone. There is a place where you belong! Life may be difficult. But this life is not all there is. Jesus will right all wrongs, and he is preparing a place for those who trust in him. “Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest in hope” (Acts 2:26).
What areas of your life do you need to hand over to him until that day?
Jerry Borton lives in Souderton, Pennsylvania, with his wife, Joan. He serves as area director for Joni and Friends Greater Philadelphia.