Joni and Friends
In 1967 Joni Eareckson injured her back diving into shallow water and became a quadriplegic, unable to walk or use her hands. It would seem that someone in this condition wouldn’t be able to accomplish much, but Joni has experiences a successful life and even heads an organization called Joni and Friends whose goal is to help disabled people to live a normal life and to share the gospel with them.
Here is their statement of their purpose:
Joni and Friends is built on Biblical truth and the foundation of Jesus Christ. We are about advancing disability ministry and changing the church and communities around the world. The Joni and Friends International Disability Center (IDC) serves as the administrative center for ministries which provide outreach to thousands of families affected by disability around the globe. We invite you to browse our website to discover more ways you can be involved with our global outreach to the disability community!
Joni and Friends is answering the call in the Gospel of Luke 14, “invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind and you will be blessed…make them come in so my house will be full.”
We present the clear and concise Gospel of Jesus Christ to all people affected by disability and their families who are served through our programs around the world. We train, disciple, and mentor people affected by disability to exercise their gifts of leadership and service in their churches and communities. We energize the church to move from lack of awareness to including disabled persons into the fabric of worship, fellowship, and outreach.
Our Vision: to accelerate Christian ministry in the disability community.
Our Mission: to communicate the Gospel and equip Christ-honoring Churches worldwide to evangelize and disciple people affected by disabilities.
The Four Things We Do:
- Evangelize people affected by disabilities and their families
- Train, disciple, and mentor people affected by disabilities
- Multiply disability effective churches
- Promote a biblical worldview on disability through education and policy
Wheels for the World: Sending the gift of mobility and the Gospel message worldwide.
Family Retreats: Domestic and international retreats for families that live with disability.
Television Series: Each episode highlights God’s goodness in a world shattered by suffering.
Radio Program: Joni Eareckson Tada shares encouragement and Biblical insights.
Christian Institute on Disability: Higher education, ministry training, and Public Policy Center.
Church Relations: Equipping churches for disability ministry.
In her autobiography, Joni, she tells how immediately after the accident she felt it was useless for her to go on living, but because of her disabilities she couldn’t take any action to end her life. She asked some of her friends to help her but they refused. I have sometimes wondered what would have happened if Joni had been born later and in a country where physician assisted suicide was legal. Would her desire to die have been granted? If so, not only would her life have ended but all the good things she later accomplished would never have happened. Many would have suffered as a result of her death.
A lot of people think that badly disabled people can’t accomplish anything good and favor eliminating them by helping them to kill themselves or by aborting them before they are born. They don’t realize that God is able to use anyone to help carry out his work, even those who are disabled. He used Joni Eareckson. He also used a man named Nick Vujicic, who was born without arms or legs. I have written a post about him.
Many believe that they aren’t able to serve God because of some weakness or disability. If you are one of those persons, or know someone who is, remember that if you are a Christian God has work for you to do and if you submit to him and seek to obey him he will enable you to accomplish his will for you regardless of any physical limitations you may have.
Posted on February 9, 2017, in abortion, Miscellaneous, websites and tagged abortion, assisted suicide, disabilities, Joni and Friends, Joni Eareckson Tada, Life Without Limbs, Nick Vujicic, suicide. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.