In its own beautiful, messy way, stuttering is a gift. As author and stutterer Katherine Preston said, “Stuttering has given me far more than it ever took away” (Preston, 238). In one aspect, my stutter has taught me how to think before I speak. Whatever I say needs to be worthwhile and uplifting because I have to fight for those words. Those words that come out smoothly are rare treasures that I value with all of my heart. My stutter has also taught me how to listen more than I speak. Listening to the amazing words of wisdom that others have to say has enriched my life beyond belief! Most of all, my stutter has taught me how to love people in their humanity. . .to love their flaws and imperfections, because God has so richly loved me in my own.
So often, we deceive our hearts into thinking that we can’t show people our weaknesses or that we always have to be strong. If we didn’t have flaws, we wouldn’t need a Savior. When we are willing to lay our weakness before people without reservation, we show them that they don’t have to be afraid of their own, because we are all in this broken, flawed world together. We are all learning how to see ourselves as God sees us. . .as broken pieces of clay that come together to make a beautiful masterpiece in the hands of the Creator.
I may not be the best speaker in the world, but I praise the Lord that I CAN speak, that I can walk, that I can see, that I can hear. I hope and pray that my voice will be an instrument that God uses to make a difference in just one life some day. If it does, the struggle will absolutely be worth it! Accepting our weaknesses is all about redefining strength. Strength isn’t always doing something well. Sometimes, true strength is just having the courage to try.