Monday, December 15, 2008

A Little Bit of Heaven

I met a little bit of heaven this weekend.
Her name was Kim.
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Let me tell you about her.
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I was invited to Ohio to speak to a church for a Christmas event and when I got the first call from the event coordinator there was something different in her voice. They didn't have any money for a speaker, she didn't know if anyone would come to the event because my topic is so "non-traditional" and this church is on the traditional side, but she felt God leading her to invite me. So, I accepted.
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All along, we had no idea who would come, if anyone, but all along, I knew it was supposed to happen.
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Happen, it did.
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And boy am I glad.
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Perhaps the event was for me...to let me get a glimpse of what the angels in heaven are like, because I saw one this weekend and her name was Kim.
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You see, Kim was a "Thalidomide baby". I hope I said that right. Her mother had taken a morning sickness medication that was later found out to cause this. She told me that when she was born, her head and neck were on her shoulder (that must have been repaired by surgery because she looked like you and me in that area) but her left arm stopped at her elbow. Her left hand was at her elbow. She was 4'11" tall. Exactly one foot shorter than me.
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She said that for years, she wore clothes to hide her arm. She was embarrassed because she considered herself severely flawed and she hated it. She told me about a time when she was 15 and had dated a boy during the summer and she had gotten so good at hiding her arm that he didn't even know. But one day they stepped into a boat and her coverup slipped off her arm, and he got so scared he ran all the way back to the house and never talked to her again.
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Now that I've told you about Kim's physical appearance (and did I tell you she is absolutely beautiful?) let me tell you about her inner beauty.
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Heaven on earth.
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Kim is an angel walking around in clothes. She told me that the night before she was to go into see the best lawyer there was who was suing the medical company for her condition God woke her up in the middle of the night and told her she was not going to get any money. None. He told her she was made that way to bring glory to Him. That her body was not a mistake, she was not flawed and that is the way He wanted her to be so she could lead others to Christ.
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She told me she is on earth to serve God.
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And that is exactly what she does. To hear of the ways that God provides for her is like hearing sweet music. To be in her house, listen to the praise music she continually has going, to just sit and talk to her is like being with the angels.
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People in Ohio, if you are reading this, you are so blessed to know this woman. And people in Ohio, she is blessed to know you, too, because she told me so. You see, to see beauty is to believe the good around you, not to see the negative.
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Why, oh why, do we think we have to wait to get to heaven to have a slice of it?
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Can I encourage each of you today to be an angel to someone? Will you look at those around you a bit differently? See the good, see the beauty?
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I was so blessed to get to meet Kim's two adult children...wow, did they ever love their mama! Kim's husband left about 7 years ago because of an addiction but you know what, she never spoke ill of him. Hmmm, what can we all learn from this 4'10" Little Bit of Heaven? Yes, she might not look like everyone else, but she sure didn't act like most of us either.
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I got my Christmas lesson this weekend. Thank you sweet Kim.
You blessed the fancy tights right off me!
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Have a beautiful week my sweet friends.
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And now, your Fashion tip of the week:
Do you want to dress up for a party but just don't have a lot of extra money to do?
Go to a Walmart or Dept. Store and buy a can of hair spray with glitter! Spray it on and get all fancy with some sparkles in your hair! You'll look like you just came from the salon!

9 comments:

Melanie said...

I know Kim! I also had the privilege of meeting her because we were in the same speaker group at SheSpeaks 2008.
You are absolutely right about her. Her testimony is beautiful and so is she!

April said...

wow that is amazing!! Gods beauty is all around us and sometimes we miss it!! what an amazing woman

Dawn said...

That amazing woman is one of my very best JESUS friends. I don't know what I would do without her in my life. She is truely an angel on earth. If this is your first time hearing about her I challenge you to reach out to her and you will see the Jesus in her.

Brooklyn said...

Kim is my mom! She's an awesome person and I love her very much!

Jacob said...

I'm the other adult child...Kim is an amazing woman and has raised me in the ways of God. I am so blessed to have her as my mom. I had a great time meeting Shari and seeing the two of them interact.

One More Equals Four said...

Wow, this is so amazing and just what I needed to hear. I am not beautiful by the world's standards and it is something I have struggled with a lot. Surprisingly, more in my adult life than when I was young. I know all the verses about being made in the image of God. I have read a million books. I know God's truth in my head, but oh, how hard it is sometimes to know in your heart.

I am literally just crying right now as you describe this "beautiful" woman. That is who I so long to be! thanks for a wonderful post--the first I have ever read of yours, but I will definitely be back!

Shari Braendel said...

To the beautiful woman who posted above, I don't know your name, but God does. You see, I believe that when we get to heaven, we are going to find out that God's idea of physical beauty is what WE look like...you, me, each of us. With our own unique physical qualities we tend to compare ourselves to what society tells us is beautiful...is just isn't so. Models are airbrushed, first of all, and God thinks you are amazing just as you are. Kim talked about how she had to come to terms with her physical differences and then she was able to honor God. What made Kim beautiful is not her differences on the outside, but her differences on the inside. You see, real beauty is an inside job. I pray you will make a decision this holiday season to strip off the insecurities of the physical and conquer beauty on a whole new level. Praying for you today sweet reader...God didn't bring you here by accident. He wanted you to see that you are perfect, just as you are. May His light radiate to others around you. I believe YOU are a walking angel among us...shine!

Kim said...

Marvelous are Your works Oh Lord and that my soul knows well.

His words, His love, His promises have become my “fashion statement”. Wearing them means "freedom". After years of tears and doubts I’ve learned to accept the opinion of the One who formed me and calls me His Bride. He says, “It is Good”!

Kim said...

This is my first time to blog…obviously I have know clue what I'm doing. (see above post:)

But it’s also my first time being called “A little bit of Heaven”. I’m smiling because I know me:) I’m the person who almost went postal on a postal worker yesterday for wrinkling Shari’s coat:). Instead I smiled and thought, “a little bit of Heaven, a little bit of Heaven”.

It was amazing to have Shari speak to my ladies this past weekend. A week as come and gone and they are still raving! Can I just say…if you are reading this and you are a coordinator anywhere Shari is a must. I’m not kidding. This Princess Rock Star is the “real deal”! Her fashion presentation is awesome…her testimony will seal the deal. She ministers with style, class, and grace. It’s Jesus all the way for her and it shows.

To “One More Equals Four”…Wow! God is so Awesome!!! He brought you here. He loves you so much. He created you and when He finished he said, “It is good”. You have been fearfully and wonderfully made; specially placed on the Potter’s Wheel with gentleness, love and care. Designed by the Creator of the Universe for such a time as this…and He said…It is Good! Can I say it again? He said, “It is good”.

Marvelous are Your works Oh Lord and that my soul knows well.

I know this thought can sometimes be so hard for us to grasp. But “wearing it” means freedom. His words have become my “fashion statement”. After years of tears and insecurities, I’ve learned I can take off my hiding garments and wear His words, His promises, His love for me. If He thinks “It is good” then that’s enough for me. Who else’s opinion means more than the One who formed me and calls me His bride?