As I’ve shared before, I’ve had to overcome adversity. My dad died an alcoholic, and my stepdad walked out on my siblings and me the day of my mother’s funeral. To be honest, although I usually end up with greater faith after encountering challenge or loss, the journey there isn’t always easy.
Daniel Ritchie has a unique perspective about what it’s like to experience a deeper connection with God through adversity. He was born without arms and struggled to breathe on his own. A few moments after he was delivered, the doctor asked his parents, “Do you want us to let him go?”
The doctor assumed that Daniel’s life wasn’t worth living if he couldn’t experience the traditional American dream. The medical community makes the same assumption when they recommend that parents abort children who receive a challenging prebirth diagnosis.
Daniel’s doctors argued that he would face a lifetime of challenges, but Daniel’s parents chose to believe that God was sovereign and that their son was a gift from God.
Over the years, Daniel’s greatest burden wasn’t his physical disability. It was feeling different. On several occasions, his family was asked to leave restaurants because Daniel ate with his feet. Strangers called him horrible names like “freak” and “cripple.”
At age 15, Daniel submitted his life to Christ and learned to see past his brokenness to how God sees him – made in His image and created for a purpose.
Daniel is on our Focus on the Family Broadcast “Finding God’s Purpose in Adversity” to share a message of hope for anyone facing tough challenges. He shares from the Bible and from personal experience why believers must reject the idea that comfort is the supreme value in life. Until we do that, we’ll miss opportunities to bring glory to Christ through our suffering.
Daniel Ritchie’s book My Affliction for His Glory: Living Out Your Identity in Christ as is available for a gift of any amount. For more information, visit our website or call 1-800-A-FAMILY (232-6459).