My favorite Christmas show, and my favorite Christmas description. After all… Jesus is the whole reason for the celebration of Christmas. It’s not about the presents, the food, the music, or the decorations. It’s about celebrating Jesus’ birth and the sacrifice he and his father, God – made for us, so we could have forgiveness, eternal life, and joy. What a blessing! I know I’m a day late for posting this, but when you think about it – shouldn’t we celebrate our savior every day of the year? Praise the Lord, and Merry Christmas!
C.A. Bennett – Writer
You can be anything you want to be!
That’s what I told my kids when they were kids. They’d come to me and say, “Momma! I want to be a Fireman!” or maybe one would say, “Can I be a police man when I grow up?” and of course, being the mom who believed in the endless potential of my littles that I was, I naturally told them they could be ANYTHING they want to be!
And to this day, I truly believe that, with all my heart.
Not to sound overly partial, but I have some really awesome, and multi-talented kids. I’ve seen them change from one thing, to another, with still more to come. There is a seemingly endless ability to reinvent themselves, depending on their current situation in life and how they respond to it, and I am never disappointed with their progress.
But I didn’t come here today, to rave about my completely amazing adult children.
A few days ago, my husband was talking to me about my status as a college student, future Teacher, or Counselor, (I haven’t decided yet) current employment status as a Behavior Specialist, and Writer, plus the Ordained Minister thing, which I’m not currently practicing in any form other than internet posts – He said something I thought was interesting, and in fact, it stopped me in my tracks. After naming off the aforementioned statuses, he said;
How can you be all those things? You should just pick one and go with it.
Being me, my first response was, “Why?” because I’m a ‘why’ kind of gal. I like to – scratch that – I NEED to know the reason behind things. I can’t do algebra, without knowing why something is calculated the way it is. I once took a Rubik’s Cube apart to find out why the colors line up the way they do, because simply accepting it wasn’t good enough for me.
The ultimate question for me in this particular instance, is; Why should a person settle for being only one thing? What if you want to be more than one? I’m a wife and a mother, not just one or the other, so why can’t I be a teacher, and a writer, and a minister, and a behavior specialist? I am also a weaver, crocheter, knitter, and general crafter of anything that catches my fancy. I like it like that. If you are talented at or only want to be or do only one thing, then by all means – be that one thing and do it to the best of your ability. As long as you’re happy, and you aren’t hurting yourself or anyone else, then by God, DO IT!
But – If like me, you happen to be good at multiple things, and you have a desire to BE all those things, then why shouldn’t you? In the words of the United States Army, “Be all that you can be!”
I’d like to leave with you, a favorite quote, by one of my favorite authors;
If God gives you something you can do, why in God’s name wouldn’t you do it? – Stephen King
Truer words were never spoken. Now get up, go find out what you can do, and DO IT!
Many blessings, and Happy Sunday!
C.A.Bennett – Writer – and a whole bunch of other pretty cool things!
I have an 18 year old son with autism, who was mostly non-verbal until he was six, had sensory issues out the ying-yang, and could not…. would not…. go anywhere without specific items he “needed.”
Yesterday, I went to church with this boy, who willingly left his phone and headphones in the car two blocks away, and removed his favorite SF Giants hat upon entering the church, then kept it off the entire time. That never would have been the case a few ago! All of those things would have been a battle ending in frustration for all of us.
As he stood next to me singing hymns and Christmas songs along with me and the rest of the church – keeping time, carrying a tune, and missing not a single word – the enormity of his level of progress struck me so hard, I had to stop and collect myself before I could continue singing. Thank God I’d stuffed tissues in my sweater pocket before leaving, as most mothers are in the habit of doing regardless of how old our kids are.
The kid amazes me daily. This once non-verbal young man, now talks politics daily with his family, friends and teachers. He can do most everything on his own, he just forgets to do them. Is every day perfect? No. But who’s is? My menopausal self has more meltdowns than this kid! Very often, he does things for me out of the clear blue sky, just because he wants to help me out.
One day, I’d gone grocery shopping and was in the process of putting everything away, with only the bag of sugar to transfer to its container in the cupboard, when I needed to take a bathroom break. When I came back, the sugar was in the container, in the cupboard, and the paper bag it came in was in the trash. My first reaction was to thank my husband for doing it, but he said he hadn’t. Our son said, “Oh. I did it because I wanted to help you.” You could have knocked me over with a feather!
There have been other similar occasions where my kid just does something nice for me or his dad because he feels like it, and it always shocks me. Just last Friday, he surprised us by he using his own allowance money to buy his dad and I a snowcone after school. Nobody asked him to. In fact, we weren’t even with him when he did it on the way from the bus stop!
If you know anything about autistic people, then you know it’s uncommon for them to take another’s desires, comfort, wishes, or well-being into consideration, much less take action to propagate it on their own!
To what do I attribute this amazing progress?
- God and the power of prayer.
- Parents and four older brothers who refused to treat this boy any differently than anyone else.
- A lot of love and patience .
- Wonderful teachers, speech therapists, and occupational therapists provided free-of-charge by the school district.
- The kid himself, for always trying so hard to meet all his goals.
- Lots of patience and self-education on autism.
- Always telling him that autism is what he has, not what he is!
That’s very important!
If I could give other parents advice on coping with autism, it would be to follow the seven steps above, every single day no matter how hard it is. Whether or not it’s a good day is irrelevant. You don’t always have good days either, but isn’t it nice when people still treat you with love and compassion? Don’t forget that part of love is never giving up on them. It hasn’t always been easy, but it’s definitely always been worth it!
C.A. Bennett – Writer
This morning, my youngest son and I went to church for the first time in a very long time. We – my husband, the kid, and I – usually read our bibles on our own at home, and share what we learn with one another, friends and family and vice versa. That’s all great, and I’m sure God doesn’t mind that, but I have really been feeling the need to actually go to church for quite some time now, but didn’t because the church I’d been going to contained an element that made me very uncomfortable. I won’t go into details, but suffice to say, It’s been awhile.
Anyway… This morning, we went to a church recommended to me by a friend, who’s opinion and council I trust, and I was not disappointed! The church building and it’s parishioners were warm and welcoming, the music was really good, and the words projected onto a big screen on the wall, and the most important part – the message – was wonderful!
We heard about Jesus and how He came from God through the common people, Mary and Joseph, instead of the family of Herod, the Pharisees, the politicians, etc. The reason is – or should be – obvious. God was directly reaching out to the common person, aka; you and me! He gave us someone we could relate to! What a blessing!
Another thing I loved hearing today was in regards to the past vs. the future. There is a quote most people have heard at one time or other by George Santayana, who wrote (in The Life of Reason, 1905): “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
While that may be true, I would like to suggest something I hadn’t thought of in a long time, and that we heard in church this morning.
Not that I have already obtained, or am already made perfect: but I press on, if so be that I may lay hold on that for which also I was laid hold on by Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself yet to have laid hold: but one thing I do, forgetting the things which are behind, and stretching forward to the things which are before, I press on toward the goal unto the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
So I leave you with this; Learn from your past mistakes so that you don’t repeat them, yes. But having done so, let them go, so you can focus on the future and what God has in store for you! Don’t hold onto that which you cannot change, because your past can also be an anchor that drags you down. God has good plans for you, so keep looking forward!
Praise The Lord!
C.A. Bennett – Writer