I often hear the word “wrong” to describe my child.
“What’s wrong with her skin?”
“What’s wrong with her face?”
Or, simply, “What’s wrong with her?”
My daughter Brenna was born three years ago and diagnosed with a very rare and life-threatening skin disorder. Her skin doesn’t do the jobs for her body that our skin does — things like protecting her from germs or helping to maintain her body temperature. She can’t even sweat.
To try to make up for this, her body produces skin too quickly, leaving her with the appearance of a terrible sunburn all over her body.
This lifelong condition affects our lives every day, sometimes in profound ways, as we try to care for her skin the best we can, but also as we endure the various kinds of public reaction that come from looking very different.
As it turns out, not looking like everyone else means that our daughter receives daily stares, pointing, comments and questions — questions about “what is wrong?”
So her skin appears different than most, and it doesn’t function like most. But wrong?
To be wrong is to be mistaken. And I don’t believe that mistakes happen with our awesome God.
When Brenna was just a few days old, critically ill, and in the neonatal intensive care unit, a family member approached us and said: “I haven’t talked to God in years, but I’ve been praying for Brenna.”
In that moment God assured me that He had an extraordinary purpose for her life, that He was bringing His children closer to Him through our daughter, and that He was working through her to reach the hearts of others.
I also soon discovered that God was also working through me, too, by giving me the courage to stand up and say that my daughter is not wrong, she is beautiful.
God has given us the courage to find the beauty in this life, not the tragedy. We believe wholeheartedly that Brenna was given to us uniquely; she was not given to us broken. She is beautifully created by God.
Within this, we are learning every day how to discover the beauty in the different and the unexpected. Where society often mocks different, we have found God’s beautiful creation in our differences and are learning to glorify His awesomeness through our distinct personalities, talents, and yes, appearances.
But as we all learn to appreciate and celebrate our differences — our own and each other’s — may we remember as well that the God who created each of us with unique a purpose and talents also created us with a likeness in His image.
We are different, and we are the same — none of us perfect, but formed purposely by a perfect Creator. And there is nothing wrong about that.
Related: Invite a friend over and serve her coffee in this inspirational mug and relax and enjoy the time together! Perfect for gifting too!