As you engage with families affected by disability at your church, you may begin to learn that God has called you into a world of service that you do not feel equipped for. You and your team will probably have the privilege of building friendships with people who see the world differently and express themselves in ways that you are not accustomed to. Sometimes these social differences can be perceived negatively and can create difficult situations.
The newest title in the Irresistible Church Series, Responding with Compassion, addresses the challenging behaviors that some of our friends with disabilities might display and how to respond in those moments. This book provides the tools needed to learn more about your friends’ behaviors and how to help them positively engage in your inclusive ministry environment. During His ministry, Jesus spent much of his time with people affected by disability, including them and showing them compassionate love. This is the ongoing heart of being an Irresistible Church.
Author Jen McNally helps us see “behavior as communication.” Through the pages of this book, she provides practical and proactive approaches that will not only help your ministry programs run smoothly, but will increase the likelihood that authentic community is formed. As always, our hope is that this resource will help you create a place where people affected by disability fully belonging in the life of the local church.
As you read Responding with Compassion, you will learn why people affected by disability might engage in challenging behaviors as well as various proactive strategies to help you navigate these challenges within your ministry. With just a few small changes in your ministry, we pray that you will feel more confident in responding to various social behaviors. As Jen writes, “When we are presented with challenging behaviors in our ministries, we have the opportunity to be the hands and feet of Jesus by responding with compassion.” Truly, everybody deserves the opportunity to be loved, to be accepted, and to fully belong.
May this resource be a blessing to you, to your church, and ultimately, to the families that God is calling you to welcome, serve, and love!