Inspiration is “the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, especially to do something creative.” I would add that inspiration stimulates you to do something GOOD. If you haven’t noticed, I’m kind of a freak about Doing Good. (Isaiah 1:17 instructs us to “Learn To Do Good”, so this isn’t just something I came up with myself, it’s right there in the Bible, which should be our life instruction manual.)

Daddy and JimMy parents Sally and Gary Hibma are among the most inspirational people in my life. I could give countless examples of their selflessness and generosity. I could tell you how they’ve set goals and worked TOGETHER to see them to fruition. I could tell stories of their hard work and diligence in trying seasons as farmers or how they’ve loved and supported their kids and grandchildren well. Instead, I want to zoom in on one example though. I want to tell you about how they were gifted a year and a half into their marriage with my brother Jim who has Down Syndrome. They were only 19 and 22 when they brought Jim home—firmly rejecting suggestions that they consider other alternatives by their doctor. He lived at home with my parents until he turned 21 and then moved into a residential home with his three “guys” and full time staff. They (as do we all) love Jim fiercely. 

Mommy and JimWhen your kids grow up, as a rule, you launch them into the world and watch them attempt to fly. Eventually, you trust that they’re going to land on their feet and you worry less. Launching a child with Down Syndrome is certainly different, yet my parents still launched him and dared to let him live his life outside of their protective nest. Mom and Dad made sure Jim had all the services he needed to live life fully and successfully in this world. They’ve advocated for him tirelessly and prayed for him daily. They continue to be very involved in his life without being helicopter parents. And guess who is still FLYING at 50?! My big brother, Jim, of whom I couldn’t be prouder. It’s because of our parents though, that I am constantly inspired to do good as they’ve done for the last 50+ years.

Jim's 50th Birthday Party

In light of this … I want to tell you about BORN THIS WAY

BORN THIS WAY is the heartwarming hit series which premieres Season 2 next Tuesday, July 26 on A&E Network.

BORN THIS WAY chronicles the lives of a group of young adults born with Down syndrome as they pursue their passions while defying society’s expectations. The series also follows their parents who share their own journey of joy, sacrifice, and unconditional love. 

You can watch a clip of Rachel HERE that shares the heart and depth of this show. In this clip you will meet Rachel, one of the cast members. Rachel, like the rest of the young adults featured in this series is an inspiration – facing the challenges and obstacles of life with courage, grace, determination and love.

GIVE AWAY …  Who inspires you? Someone in your community? Someone in your family? COMMENT ON FACEBOOK and I will put all the names of those who share a person of inspiration into a hat and will draw out ONE WINNER who will receive a $25 gift card to Target. The winner can choose to give that gift card to the person who inspires them or keep it. You may only enter ONCE and you must comment by Friday, July 29.