No-Limits – No Disabilities!

By Marjorie Foerster Eddington and Judith Cordray

What would our lives be like if we didn't place any limits on ourselves or others? A lot freer, a lot more successful, a lot more exciting and rewarding, a lot more inventive.

Negative, limited, "no-can-do!" attitudes keep us from achieving what we're truly able to do – more than we think we can do. It can be tempting to accept that we can't do certain things, or can't do them well. Sometimes we label others as less-than-capable, disabled even. But Jesus didn't. He didn't limit or label anyone. He knew that "with God all things are possible" (Matt 19:26).

So let's take off those limits with God's help. Let's have a "can-do" attitude. That's the only way we have sent astronauts into space, invented new technologies, run faster than people thought was humanly possible. Having such an attitude fosters growth and progress.

Here's one example of the difference it can make when people remove limits and expect good things to happen.


Our son, Frederick, was in 4th grade when we found out about a therapeutic horseback riding stable near us. Fred is in special education classes and participates in many Special Olympics sports. Riding, however, was something new for him. Fred enjoyed the social aspects of these lessons, but over several years, he didn't progress with his riding skills and always rode on a lead-line.

After we moved, Fred started riding at a new stable, and everything changed. I used to think that riding would be just a social activity for Fred, a chance to get out, get some exercise, and have a fun time – it was just a "pony ride." Was I ever proved wrong! After two years with these instructors, Fred rides independently most of the time, walking and trotting his horse around various obstacles, following set patterns in the ring, and generally improving his horsemanship skills. This past spring, he even participated in a drill team activity with three other riders, following a pattern to music in front of an audience!

The difference is in the instruction – in the attitude and expectation of the teachers. They have an amazing vision. They just don't see any limits for their students. They're always thinking of new things to try. They have a depth of love and compassion for their students that is awe-inspiring. It's been amazing to see how Fred has responded to this no-limits approach. That's how God made him – in His image, without any disabilities or limits. Those are simply not a part of his identity.

Riding in such an atmosphere has definitely made a difference in Fred's experience. The skills he learns in the ring translate into increased awareness in his day-to-day life. He concentrates better and is more aware of his actions and how those actions affect others around him.

What I learned from this experience is that barriers are just mental, and we sometimes accept them without thinking. We might think that there are certain things we or others just can't do. We might believe that we or others are limited by circumstances, ability, age, gender, whatever. When we look beyond those barriers, we see that we can do a lot more than we thought we could. And, our uplifted view of other people can make a difference. Fred has proved it with his riding!

Judith Cordray, NV