Keep Growing

It is inspirational, the little tree that has been knocked down into a nearly vertical position – because it keeps growing.

It reminds me of a man who was “born to lose.” He was born with cerebral palsy. He suffered constant physical pain, humiliating public ridicule, bullying, and constant discouragement. Every time he faced a challenge he was told, “You can’t do that. You have cerebral palsy.” But he kept growing.

His father died. His mother was his one and only comforter and cheerleader. To each objection that others raised about his abilities, his mother told him he could do that. He felt that his mother was the only person in the world who loved him and the only woman in the world who would ever love him. Then she died, leaving him an orphan at age 14.

Severely depressed, and passed around from place to place because no one wanted him, he dropped out of school. Over the next two years, he attempted suicide several times. Then he gave his life to Jesus…and suddenly found for the first time in his life – he could do that. With the power of Jesus’ Holy Spirit, the baby who was born to lose transformed into a winner. He kept growing.

David Ring went back to school and graduated. He applied for college and was told, “You can’t do that. You have cerebral palsy.” Ring graduated from college and followed the Lord’s call into ministry. He was told, “You can’t do that. You have cerebral palsy. You can’t preach. Who would listen to you? You can’t talk right. You stutter. You can’t walk right. Your legs drag. No church would call you to preach.” He kept growing.

David Ring became a nationally known motivational speaker in 1973, and addresses some 100,000 people each year. He is also an author. He kept growing.

Ring was told, “You will never get married. You can’t get married. You have cerebral palsy. No woman would want you.” He kept growing.

Ring is a proud husband, and the father of four children. He has two grandchildren. The mantra of his life is: “I have cerebral palsy, but cerebral palsy doesn’t have me.” He keeps growing.

Ring tells audiences, “I serve the Lord with all that is within me. What’s your excuse?”

Good questions. If we have quit growing…what is our excuse?