Where in the world is the evaporated milk. If I ever had to play “Supermarket sweep” I would definitely be in last place. I can never find a thing even after shopping in the same grocery store for my entire life! My mind was consumed by the hide and seek game this “milk” was playing with me. Yet, not consumed enough to not hear the whispers behind my back… “she is a small grown up” or “wow, she’s little” or the stares that last just a second long enough to be obvious. It seems utterly silly that I can’t even shop for groceries without feeling out of place. I went to the post office and heard a man refer to my small stature in a less than sweet manner. I went to the park with a friend’s daughter and was repeatedly stared at and discussed by “well meaning parents”. I would be lying if I said they didn’t hurt me even if they were innocently spoken. Sometimes I feel I have a handicap sticker taped to my forehead. You know, sometimes the hurt gets old!
I read a story this morning about a young man named Tim who has Down syndrome. He has opened his own restaurant and written on the wall is a sentence that spoke volumes to my heart. It says “I am more like you…than different.” Amen! You see Tim and I have completely different disabilities, completely different struggles, and completely different stories. Yet, can’t that be said about every single person shopping at the grocery store, dropping their mail at the post office, or playing in the park with their kids. We all look different on the outside. Some people are tall while others are short. Some people are bigger boned while others are slimmer. Some have red hair, others have blond or brunette. We are all different with different experiences yet in the deepest parts of our heart we are more alike than you know. Our hearts cry to be loved, to to be enough or to have worth…to be found and given significance. Sometimes life feels like a great search for significance. My sweet family has been whispering and sometimes screaming (haha) this truth in my ears for a long time. People write books about it, blog about it (yours truly included), talk about it, cry about it, and die wishing for it.
Tim has taught me a great lesson today. That I am more like everyone else than I thought and the great search for significance isn’t found in being like everyone else but instead JUST BEING FOUND in general. My search for evaporated milk was made difficult by the overwhelming aisles of food that after awhile start to blend together. The relief I felt when I found that stinkin’ evaporated milk was utterly unbelievable (I mean it’s just evaporated milk) because that had been the first aisle I walked down. Yet, I totally missed it. I completely overlooked the one thing I had been searching for. On my quest to find it I had missed it. I was so consumed by “not finding” the evaporated milk that I couldn’t even see it right in front of me. Just like when those statements are made and those stares are noticed I become consumed with the idea of being significant enough to matter and search to find my similarities to the “norm”. When all the while I am more like you than I thought…too busy playing hide and go seek for significance. Yet, Jesus, the only one that is different, is calling my name down the aisle of life that I was too blind to see Him on. He is telling me that if “I seek Him I will find Him if I seek Him with all my heart!” And just like that I am consumed by the murmurs of my Savior not someone else, I am consumed by His voice and not the voice of a stranger, and I have been FOUND by someone that will continually make me more like Him…than different. I have found my search significance in the only one that matters!
He's Big and I'm Little,