Standing between a stroller and a wheelchair…

by DanWolgemuth on April 28, 2023

A journey through Denver International Airport is something I can do without thought. I’ve done it hundreds of times over the past 18 years.

Today, as I boarded the train that connects the main terminal to the C Concourse, I stood between a baby in a stroller, and an elderly woman in a wheelchair. The stroller was being pushed by parents. A mom and a dad who periodically looked down on their little girl with delight. The baby was beautiful, dispensing occasional smiles to the strangers in front of her… or more appropriately, above her.

By contrast, the elderly woman was being pushed by an airport employee. A complete stranger to her. And unlike the baby, her eyes were closed as her head rested in her hands.

These two, very vivid and contrasting images collide in a place of vulnerability. Decades separate the lives of these two women, but both find themselves in a posture of dependence.

My familiarity with Denver International promotes an air of self-reliance. Overconfidence. Personal sufficiency. I move at the pace of personal autonomy… but for how long? Until when?

Just the day before this encounter, the odometer of my personal life clicked over one more year. A milestone. A birthday… one step closer to the wheelchair.

For most of my life I’ve avoided vulnerability. Perhaps I’ve just ignored it. I’ve painted a picture of personal competence that denies the reality of personal vulnerability.

And yet, today, as I glanced back and forth between a stroller and a wheelchair, I realized that all of life is a journey through vulnerability. Whether we admit it or not… we are fragile. Every one of us. It’s what makes courage so noteworthy, so remarkable, so commendable. Without vulnerability, bravery wouldn’t be brave. Generosity wouldn’t be sacrificial. Love wouldn’t be costly.

But it is, because we are… vulnerable. All of us.

From the powerful to the marginalized.

For those who have amplified voices, and those who are silent.

All of us. Somewhere between a stroller and a wheelchair… and vulnerable all along the way.

My self-assurance is a smoke screen. A fog. A mirage.

It masks a reality that a wheelchair exposes.

But be of good cheer… our vulnerability has a companion. A soulmate. A confidante.


He became vulnerable so that we would have a guide through life. So that we would have hope in death.

The mask of invincibility slid off my face this morning… somewhere between Concourse A and C.

And it led me, once again, to Jesus.

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: