In dealing with people with disabilities and it is true with all ministries, it is impossible to delete the Love Factor.  Bob is a member of Special Gathering and I pick him up each week.

Dealing with his family has become a bit of a prick for me but I’ve known and respected them for more years than I can remember.  Before Bob was born, I had enormous respect for the integrity of this family.  Even though I find them a bit difficult, I have never lost my great respect for them and for the way they have raised their son who was born with multiple disabilities in addition to being intellectually disabled.

He is a miracle and it is because his mother has been a tyrant when dealing with his therapists, teachers and other professionals.

I find myself having to be cautious to not do too many things which show favortism regarding Bob.  However, I’m told that occasionally I overstep the line and my partiality is obvious.

I’ve read that feeling partiality is natural.  Even in ministry, it is normal to love one person over another.  However, we should not deny our feelings because denial almost always  means that we will then deny that we are being partial.  In Bob’s case, I’ve known him since he was a baby.  I’ve loved him all his life.  

It is important in dealing with our members that we acknowledge and take into account the Love Factor.  This may come from many avenues.  Perhaps, like Bob, you have a long history that has cemented the love in your heart.

There can also be a personality attraction that causes us to love one member over another.  Teresa is not the best behaved person in our program; but she is hilarously funny.  Without trying, she can get an entire bus of people laughing and enjoying themselves.  I find this very appealing.  I love Teresa for that reason.

Faithfulness may also be a reason that you love one person over another.  Saul was forced to leave Melbourne SpG because he moved to another town.  I didn’t expect to miss him but I do.  He attended for 22 years and didn’t miss more than 5 Sundays.  That kind of faithfulness draws us together with a bond of love that cannot be denied.

There is also a factor when someone loves you more than the other members.  Years ago, SpG did an exercise where we asked our members to put into several circles their friends and people who were close to them.  One member, Lars, had only two people in the four circles.  They were a man he was closely associated with at work and at church.  The other name was me.  When I inquired about his circles, he explained that we were the only two people who really cared about him.  I’d known that Lars was faithful but I had no idea that  he felt that only two people in the world cared about him.

Of course, there are other reasons but these are a few that help to explain why the Love Factor is strong in our lives.

Is there someone you love in your program above the others?  Do you know the reason?  Share it with us.