The World Needs You

“If Rachel didn’t have special needs, then she would be a pain and she wouldn’t be Rachel.”

A statement out of the mouths of babes—my babes, that is. And oh so profound. 

These words came from two of my boys years ago when asked if they wished their sister didn’t have special needs. I couldn’t be more proud of their answer … and chagrined. Because what a couple of preteens knew intuitively, took me years to realize:

Rachel is who she was created to be—delays and all.


In order to really show her love, I needed to come to a place where I could embrace all of her, including the limited speech, incontinence, and gross and fine motor deficits. 

Like it or not (and I didn’t for a long time and still don’t appreciate all the little, and big, messes), she is a young lady who just happens to have those characteristics. I can’t separate the two.

That doesn’t mean I shouldn’t seek to enhance her abilities or find strategies and tools that will aid her development; a good parent does that for every child.

What it does mean, though, is that I need to see my daughter as a beautiful gift. All of her. Just like I view all three of my boys as gifts. 

But to do so, I had to realign my thinking, transforming it from the common worldview seeking strength and perfection to a biblical one of upside-down logic. I had to clothe myself with God’s worldview, where the least shame the strong and what is foolish shames the wise (1 Corinthians 1:27). 

How hard that is. God’s worldview is vastly different than the one we like to cling to. 

A decade ago, I needed to come to a new understanding (and continue to need reminders) that the most precious gifts are not always the largest or the strongest or the most beautifully wrapped or even the ones that have the most uses.

The most precious treasures of all are those that stretch, change, and grow us. The ones that wrestle the perceived control out of our hands and place it squarely where it should be, in the hands of the Lord. 

The most precious treasures of all are those that stretch, change, and grow us. Click To Tweet

By that definition, Rachel is a far richer treasure than the world knows … and so are all of us when we acknowledge the beautiful handiwork of our Creator and embrace our created self, not the wished-for version. 

We don’t need more Steve Jobs or Billy Grahams or Mother Teresas. We need the Rachels of the world and we need you, just as you were created to be. 

God uses us all in unique ways to fulfill His Divine work on earth.

Capture the boys’ vision. When we live as the person God created us to be, we become a rich treasure in someone else’s life. Just like Rachel.

When we live as the person God created us to be, we become a rich treasure in someone else's life. Click To Tweet

“There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work” (1 Corinthians 12:4–6).

Reflections: Is there a person in your life who the world deems as less but who is a rich treasure in your life? How has this person changed your view of yourself? Have you, in turn, embraced the created you or the wished-for version?

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Find hope in your real-life struggles. We'll chase it together! I am a wife; mom of 4 (including a young adult daughter with special needs); miscarriage mom of 5; author & follower of Jesus Christ. I write, edit, speak and enjoy everything outdoors.

6 comments on “The World Needs You
  1. Oh, Julie. This is so, so true.

    I shared about a little girl named Eden in my book, she’s almost 2 now and oh, how precious she is to me. I just love her. God has definitely used her smile and her sign language and her sparkly brown eyes to heal some of my hurts.

    • Julie Sunne says:

      It is the Eden’s of this world that show us how to be the Julie’s and the Natasha’s. I am blessed to have such a treasure and honored to be a treasure when living as God’s created daughter.

  2. Kelli says:

    Beautiful! I love when you said, The most precious treasures of all are those that stretch, change, and grow us. So true. Sometimes we do want to perseverance without the struggle!:)

  3. Wanda says:

    Love the transparency in which you shared about your daughter, Julie. In a world that values “perfection”, it’s easy to be disappointed in these delays. But how beautiful it is to look beyond all of that and see they are still beautifully and fearfully made. I have a little niece that has Down syndrome.

    • Julie Sunne says:

      Since the world’s view of perfection is manmade and will “return to dust,” we would do well to hold onto something a little more secure. God’s special children show us the way to be who we are created to be, thus bringing us into a closer relationship with Him and nearer true perfection in Christ. Love on that sweet niece of yours, Wanda! You have a treasure to embrace.

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