I spend every Friday with a community of people, disabled and able-bodied, in the ministry for the disabled here in Puerto Quito. Disabled in Spanish is discapacitado. But I like to use the word Dios-capacitado. What is Dios-capacitado?

The other day a family invited me and Padre David over for lunch. We spent the first part of the time walking around their farm, picking oranges and tangerines of different types and sizes. At one point, the husband picked up a cracked open shell of cacao, which is where chocolate comes from. He mentioned that squirrels get into the cacao, and they cause a lot of damage. Then, he was saying that the squirrels will open one just for the nectar, and then move onto another one, and that way so many of the cacao fruits are lost.

At least that’s what I think he said, or what he was generally saying. See, a lot of times I can the gist of things in the conversations with my Spanish. And sometimes I can’t understand anything.

Well, when we were winding down about the squirrels and the cacao, I had a funny thought to share to close the conversation. We all laughed. But a moment later, the husband told what I had said to David. But then his wife corrected him, “No I thought he said this.” In reality, I didn’t mean to say either of what they thought I said. But each response that all three of us were thinking, they were each funny. “Wow,” I thought, “I just told three jokes in one.”

Now, how can I do that? That’s impossible. I couldn’t do that if I had planned it, if you gave me a month to try. Give me a thousand chances, with all my strengths and intellect and education, and creative ability and driven ambition and sense of humor and gift for story-telling, with all I’ve got, I could never tell three jokes in one. But I did it – with my bad Spanish.

That’s Dios-capacitado. When we give God the capacity to do His works, the impossible, with our weaknesses.

We each have the ability to do great things. That’s a good part of life. But we each have weaknesses and disabilities. Those are the best parts. Because with those we can give God the capacity to do miracles.

We can each be Dios-capacitados.

For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities; for when I am weak, then I am strong.  (2 Cor 12:10)


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