I have recently joined a course called “an introduction to British Sign Language“, I actually enjoy learning new languages, but this is by far the hardest! We had a discussion in the “lesson” about deafness and whether deaf people were “disabled” or not. One person said “Deaf people” were “disabled” as they were not able to engage with those around them in the way a hearing person would.
The statistics that we were given were that 85% of deaf children are born to “hearing” parents so their perception would be “I need help to engage with my world“, for the 15% that are born to “deaf” parents, they would grow up with the perception that they are the norm as they can communicate with those in their home environment!
The question was asked “if a Chinese person grew up in “China Town” (there appears to be one in every major city?) Where they more than likely may mostly hear Chinese spoken so would have not learned much English (this was a hypothetical question with no racism intended), would they be classed as disabled if they then went into the “English-speaking” world as they may not be able to fully communicate with others?”
Of course not!!
This brings me to how Christians can be, some of us are born with an “impairment” as the world may see it. We are brought up to “speak, eat and breath” Christianity, our world-view may be a little narrow as our parents may not have let us be aware of what the “normal” people are like and how they communicate!
Some of us have a “slight impairment” – we have had experience of the “normal” world but due to circumstances beyond our control we have become “impaired” and we cannot deal with certain parts of society because it’s too painful.
But we have a message that needs to be heard, although Christians are not considered “normal” and some of us are considered “funda-MENTAL” the real message of Christ is one everyone needs to hear, Romans 10:14 says
So whether someone is “deaf” or “hearing”, Chinese, English, American, Asian, African or Amazonian, the message of Christ’s love and being kind and loving to everyone is something we all need to pass on and communicate in whatever way we can!!
It is no good being like some English people who go to a country with no effort to even learn anything apart from “hello” in the native language, with the expectation that the “natives” will speak English so there is no need to try to learn their language!! If we make no effort to understand the views, experiences, mind-sets of others how can we expect them to understand or even want to understand our point of view or listen to what we have to say?