Please pray as people gather to help families experiencing disability and their churches!

I’m really excited to get on a plane tomorrow for San Diego and participate in The Elisha Foundation’s Conference on Disability. The four men who serve as plenary speakers are going deep into God’s word and I’ll have the chance to facilitate a panel discussion with them on Friday night.

They are hoping to live-stream the conference. Go to their website or Facebook page to see what the options are available beginning tomorrow night, Thursday, Nov. 6.

On Friday and Saturday in Alabama, other friends of mine are gathering for The Accessible Kingdom Disability Ministry Conference. Stephanie Hubach, author of Same Lake, Different Boat, Special Needs Ministry Director for the Presbyterian Church in America and a friend of Bethlehem’s disability ministry is a keynote speaker. The conference also includes more than 40 workshops.

May God do a mighty work through these events!

As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth. (John 9:1 ESV)

(T)he Gospels are filled with observations of Jesus looking at people. His looking was often followed by compassion and then action. Both the Good Samaritan and the father of the Prodigal Son follow this trajectory. Instead of being frozen by the unknown, we can begin by looking. Instead of a plan, we have a path. So we don’t have to figure everything out. That takes the pressure off.

Paul Miller, A Loving Life, p. 85.

Paul Miller is the father of an adult daughter with disabilities and also authored the very helpful book, A Praying Life.

Cody Dolinsek, a Ph.D. student at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary who happens to be blind, asks and answers a really helpful question:

“What do those with disabilities owe to those without disabilities and vice versa?” Asking this question might seem wrongheaded in a society, not unlike others, that tends to focus attention on the question: “how shall we best help those with disabilities?” While this question is not out of place in all circumstances, it is tilted to one group’s responsibility without taking into account the other group’s need also to do its ethical duty.

The emphasis on ‘service to’ those living with disabilities and their families is not wrong. But it is certainly incomplete, especially in light of the scriptures which states that we have been created by Jesus for good works (Ephesian 2:10 ESV).

So I appreciated Mr. Dolinsek’s perspective, finding it both helpful and encouraging. We parents of children with disabilities should consider the same lessons for ourselves!

The entire article can be found here: What do those with disabilities owe those without?

On the contrary, the parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable. . . (1 Corinthians 12:22 ESV)

On Sunday the saints of Bethlehem surprised us with a party to honor Paul’s graduation!

As Dianne put it, “Friday’s school event was nice, but it was missing ‘this’!”

The ‘this’ was the joy of celebrating God’s intentional design and acknowledging how good he is with our church family who love God and who love how God made Paul; the recognition that we can live ‘as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing’ (2 Corinthians 6:10 ESV).

I was very grateful that Bethlehem’s newest Church Planting Resident, and my dear friend, Kempton Turner had some words to share:


DSC05489 DSC05459

On Friday we celebrated another milestone – Paul graduated from his high school program at Bridge View School in Saint Paul. It was a very nice ceremony.


For anyone dealing with disability or sickness, what Pastor John is committing to helping us learn to do for ourselves is really, really important and life-giving.

Last night, Pastor John wrote a new post announcing The Legacy I Want to Leave. In it he shares some deeply important things to him, like:

We believe one key to the strength of the church — the authenticity of her worship, the depth of her fellowship, and the courage of global mission — is that the people of God get steel in their spiritual spine, which is forged in the furnace of their own first-hand dealing with God in the Bible. Second-handers will not do in these trying times. (emphasis mine)

One of the greatest gifts God has given me are the people with ‘steel in their spiritual spine’ because God used disability to blow away the Satanic fog and distraction of an easy life. God and his book are the source of that steel.

And now Pastor John wants to multiply that impact by teaching us how to ‘look at the book’ for ourselves!

Almost three years ago I wrote a series on men who God has used to shape me. My first was on Pastor John. In that post I included this:

No, he taught me (and demonstrated) that God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him.  He showed me how much the Father delights in the Son, and how much the Son delights in the Father, and how great it is that we get to delight in Father, Son and Spirit! But only if we cling to Jesus as our righteousness – we do not honor God if we look to ourselves or anyone else for the kind of freedom that only Jesus can provide.

And we can know these things because God gave us a book, and that book is full of the God-centeredness of God as the greatest news there could be because there is nothing better or greater or more beautiful or more satisfying than God himself.

I am really excited about what Look at the Book could mean for families like mine all over the world and their churches as they learn how to dig deeper and deeper into what God has to say about himself and his purposes – including specifically about disability. It could change everything for them!

Please take a couple minutes to read the post and watch the video he included. And then pray that God would do even more than all that we ask or think (Eph. 3:20) in making his name and his book known and trusted and loved everywhere.



Dianne and I appreciate this young woman a great deal, who now goes by Amber Kay Satterfield as she married Eric since she gave this testimony! She has suffered much, and God is her treasure.

You can find other really helpful chapel talks and testimonies from Bethlehem College and Seminary here.

After my Paul was born I concluded that God was powerful but not good. I was really, really wrong.

In less than a minute Pastor Jason describes the two ways Satan tries to use our circumstances to define God as less than who he really is. And then Pastor Jason closes with a great reminder!

You can hear, watch or read all of Pastor Jason’s sermon, Adult Discipleship, here, delivered on March 8, 2014.

Pastor Jason Meyer on why children with disabilities are good – no, necessary – for the church:

His entire sermon can be watched, heard or read here.

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