Tag Archives: American Sign Language

A conversation

God blessed me yesterday, through two older gentlemen.

The first conversation, happened before church.

I had asked to hear an older gentlemen’s testimony.

It is stunning and I was reminded that God has not changed, He is the same God I read about in the scriptures.

God’s faithfulness and compassion are incredible!

One thing he said has stayed in my heart.

“Although, I didn’t know God, I can look back and see how He was with me all the time.”

The second conversation happened after church.

A gentleman I’ve not met before, who was visiting our church, came to speak with me about how my joining in worship through ASL was truly a blessing.

We talked about several things, including the fact that many years ago he was a worship leader and had a lady who signed ASL as part of the worship team.

He talked about how moving the words in ASL are and I showed him one of my favorite signs, one that always touches my heart, which is the sign for crucified.

His eyes grew moist as he watched me sign the word.

Then he asked, “How did you come to learn sign?”

I smiled.

“Oh! That’s a long story, but I’ll try to keep it short.”

I told him it began with our son, who has a communications disorder, we learned the alphabet in ASL first and then in English.

I talked to him about our oldest daughter getting a coffee and ending up joining a Deaf Bible Study and how she taught us a good deal of sign.

Then, I explained about being given the wrong medication and my immune system crashing, my asthma and allergies being diagnosed, and the loss of voice.

He was leaning forward, face lined with concern and asked, “When did you start speaking again?”

My broad smile nearly kept me from being able to respond.

“Palm Sunday, I was prayed for here in this church. I’ve been speaking ever since. Although, I still lose my voice now and then it’s not as often and doesn’t last as long.”

His eyes grew moist again.

“That’s right! I heard about that! My son told me, ‘There’s a lady and her family, new to our church. Her name is Hope…'”

He stopped talking and just gripped my hand.

“I came over here to tell you what a blessing your signing is and I was the one blessed by this terrific story! Thank you for sharing it with me.”

He hugged me and returned to his family.

But he left behind a blessing.

Both these older gentlemen and their conversations were gifts from God.

They reminded me that it’s a privilege to share and hear about what God has done.

They reminded me that God uses things we never expect Him to.

Their words, feelings, and openness are the fruit of God’s faithfulness to each one of us, which reminded me of the goodness of God.

These two men love Jesus and they know He loves them, thus both were quick to share that love with me.

I praise God for His blessings and for people who love God and love others.

Matthew 22:37-39 NKJV — Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.'”

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for Your blessings. Lord Jesus, please bless both those gentlemen who You used to bless me. Please watch over them, guide and direct them as they walk daily with You. Lord, please continue to help me shine You to those around me, to live and love as You do. Lord, I want people to look at me and see You. Thank You for all You have done and are doing in my life. May my life bring glory to Your name. Amen.

ASL

It stands for American Sign Language.

When our son was small he would literally start crying over the regular A, B, C,… alphabet.

At the time he was attending our local homeschool co-op and had become so adverse to learning he could no longer handle the classroom.

Since I had my own class, 3-5th grade, I just brought in Jason’s desk and he became my homeschooler.

After I learned the triggers for him, I was able to teach him how to handle working at his desk.

Then, God helped me find or make him things he could do while sitting quietly.

Math turned out to be something he enjoyed.

As well as Art.

The alphabet was still a problem.

Just placing a few letters on his desk could mean the end of his self composure.

About this time, a lady from the area heard about our son and offered to help.

“I’d like to teach you and your son ASL. I think it could really help him to learn to communicate and I’m happy to do it for free.”

What a gift!!

Of course I said yes and we got together.

It was slow at first.

However, ASL was the key to teaching our son the alphabet.

It was also something for him to use when words escaped him.

Unfortunately, we didn’t keep it in practice as he gained ability to both speak and read.

But God knew we would use it again.

One of the side effects of my asthma has been the inability to talk.

It varies from sounding like I have a terrible cold to nothing.

I remember the first time it happened. I started to sign what I wanted to say without even thinking.

Praise God! He had already prepared our family.

Both Anne and Bell had learned some ASL when the same lady taught a free class not long after her class with Jase and me.

Our oldest girl began going to a Bible study for the deaf her Freshman year of college so she actually knows more than any of us.

All of this has been such a blessing to me when I can not speak.

Infact, we all want to learn even more.

Anne and I have been trying to use it in our everyday conversations.

For me, it’s about being able to express myself and being open to God’s opportunities.

I had no idea He was going to use this small knowledge to help me.

But experience has taught me, He’s bigger than I can possibly imagine.

While He’s helping me, He may open a door for me to help someone else.

Until then, I am praising God for His blessings, including teaching our family ASL.

James 1:17 KJV — Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.