HD #4 Marina, Scott, Gracie and Scotty

  • Jan. 14, 2016
  • #8794

Uplifting letters and notes of Christian encouragement will lift the weary spirits of a family with a dad in a wheelchair, and a son with autism.

HD #4 Marina, Scott, Gracie and Scotty

Hi, I’m Joni Eareckson Tada and welcome to “Heart for the Disabled”.

All this week I’ve been mentioning the stories of families with special needs — moms and dads and disabled kids and, yes, even couples with a disability, all of them weary, bone-tired people who really, really need the encouragement of Christ. And you are helping me give that encouragement as you’ve written notes, Valentine’s cards, and letters to the people I’ve been mentioning each day. For those of you who haven’t yet written, I’ve got a family who really needs to hear from you.  

Scott and Marina are the parents of Scotty, their young son who has been diagnosed way out there on the autism spectrum. Scotty is a really good kid, but he has a lot of issues related to his autism. He can be explosive one minute, and then pretty withdrawn the next. Twelve-year-old Gracie rounds out the family; she’s a great kid, but she’ll be the first to admit that having a brother with autism and other related disabilities, well it wears on everyone. What makes this family especially unique is that Scott, the father, (get this) is spinal cord injured and uses a wheelchair. So you can see why we were so excited that they attended Family Retreat last summer.

Now, at retreat things were going really going great, but then Scotty (who, for the most part, is a sweet kid) had an explosive outburst and it wasn’t pleasant. Marina (the mom) felt so embarrassed and discouraged. She’s Hispanic, and in her broken English, she shared how grateful she was that, at least at Family Retreat, her son’s disability and erratic behavior didn’t surprise anyone. But we could tell that Marina was bone-tired. And with Scotty getting older, he’s just harder to handle. Then, not only are there Scotty’s needs, there are the needs of her husband in his wheelchair. This family is way, way too familiar with the overwhelming challenges that come with a disability. Can you see why they are one of our Heart for the Disabled families this week?

So, friend, here is a family: here is a dad in a wheelchair, and a son with severe autism, and a 12-year-old on the verge of becoming a teenager, and a mommy who is pretty weary of the non-stop 24/7 disability routines. This family would very much appreciate just a few uplifting words in a note or a card or letter. I know that God can use your words, your favorite scriptures, maybe a favorite hymn or poem. I don’t need to tell you, just let the Holy Spirit tell you what to write. The important thing is, please just write! And when you do, remember to pray for Marina and her husband Scott, and then Gracie (the 12- year-old) and also Scotty with his autism. I know this special-needs family would really be grateful hearing that there are brothers and sisters in Christ who are lifting them up before the Lord. So please, send this family true Christian encouragement. And then mail it off to Joni and Friends, P.O. Box 3333, Agoura Hills, California 91376. If you’ve missed any details about Marina, Scott, Gracie or Scotty, just go to my radio page at joniandfriends.org for the full story — we’re even posting it on our Facebook page.

Believe me, I know your words of comfort, peace, and the assurance that God's grace is sufficient—your words will go far in bolstering the spirits of Marina and her husband Scott. So thank you for coming alongside, thank you praying for, and bless you for writing a letter or note to bless this family affected by disability.  God bless you for caring during our Heart for the Disabled week!

© Joni and Friends


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