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No More Red Spot

To Sabbath School teachers: This story is for Sabbath, June 3.

By Andrew McChesney


eborah was born a healthy baby girl in Sicily, Italy.

But after a few months, something happened. A red spot appeared on her lip. The red spot grew bigger and bigger. Doctors looked at the spot and called it an angioma. But they didn’t know what to do about it.

After a year, the red spot was so big that Deborah’s bottom lip was completely deformed and out of shape. Doctors couldn’t do anything to help.

Deborah didn’t realize that she looked different from other girls and boys until she went to school.

The boys were mean. They teased her and called her unkind names. Deborah often came home crying. She didn’t fight for herself. But Mother always tried to defend her. Mother spoke with the school principal and the parents of other children.

After Mother intervened, the boys stopped calling her names for a while. But then they started calling her names again.

The girls didn’t speak unkindly to Deborah, but they still treated her differently. Each girl had her own water bottle, and they often shared their water bottles among themselves when a girl was thirsty. But no one ever offered Deborah a drink.

Deborah watched as they asked one another, “Do you want some water?”

She wished that someone would offer her water to drink.

From her first months of life, Deborah underwent treatments to get rid of the red spot. At first, she had to get a shot once a week. When she grew older, the shots were once a month. Doctors also performed two big operations. Deborah had to travel by train across Italy for the operations. She went from her home in Sicily in the far south to Parma, near Milan, in the far north. It was a long and unpleasant trip. The operations and follow-up treatments were painful. When she was 11, Deborah also began to undergo regular laser sessions to try to lighten the red spot. Deborah hoped that all the treatments would remove the red spot, but they didn’t.

“Mother, why did this happen to me?” Deborah asked her mother again and again.

Mother hugged the little girl and told her about the apostle Paul in the Bible. Paul prayed three times to God to remove a problem that he had, and God didn’t remove it. Instead, God told Paul, “My grace is sufficient for you” (2 Corinthians 12:9, NKJV).

Mother told Deborah, “God’s grace is sufficient for you. The power of the Lord can be seen in your witness.”

Mother reminded Deborah that God loved her. “God has a plan for your life,” she said. “This is only a passing phase.”

Deborah accepted that God’s grace was sufficient for her.

Something amazing happened when Deborah was 13. The red spot slowly began to go away. It faded bit by bit. After many, many months, the red spot was completely gone. Only a few faint scars from the operations could be seen.

Today, Deborah helps other people who are hurting just like she was hurting as a little girl. She is a psychologist. She also is a singer. She has a beautiful, soprano voice that she uses to sing praises to God.

“The miracle is that I carry a beautiful voice from imperfect lips,” she says.

King David, who also was a singer, said in the Bible, “O Lord, open my lips, and my mouth shall show forth Your praise” (Psalm 51:15, NKJV).

Deborah sings praises to God every day — and so can you!