Monday, April 25, 2011

A Story of Miracles

Many years ago, I had a son – my only child. I loved and cared for him with all my heart as any parent would. I sat with him when he was sick, played with him when he was bored, and cheered him on when he was up at bat. I fed him, bathed him, read stories to him, helped him pick up his toys and disciplined him when needed.

One evening, shortly after his twelfth birthday, my son was riding his bike home for dinner. Being a bit of a daredevil, like his father, he pedaled hard down the hill of his friend’s back yard and picking up speed, jumped, pulling the bike up into the air, to soar over the three-foot tall weeds by the side of the road. He cleared the weeds and flew right into the path of an oncoming SUV. After hitting the front of the car, bouncing up onto the hood, and then down to the ground, my son lay motionless in the middle of the road.

In hysterics, the woman driving the vehicle called 911 and then called the church she and her children were on their way to, asking them to pray for my son. He hadn’t secured his helmet and even though the vehicle was going only twenty-six miles per hour when they collided, the impact was enough to induce instant coma. He was taken by helicopter to Children’s Hospital but the head trauma was too great and my little boy was pronounced brain-dead the following day.

The woman driving the car and her church prayed diligently for me as I began the unthinkable task of learning to live life without my son. In fact, many people told me that they were praying for me, but being an atheist, I really didn’t understand what prayer could do.

A year later, Jesus reached into my brokenness and my grief. Through the reading of his Word, he opened my mind and my heart to his love and grace and I received him as my Lord and Savior. A few months later, the Spirit led me to attend a local church and then to become a member of that church. The day I became a member, a woman approached me and introduced herself as Jane (not her real name) and told me that she was the one driving the SUV that tragic day. As I stood there shaking her hand and hearing her words, I was filled with an overwhelming love and compassion for her. I smiled and couldn’t help but hug her. God had led me to the very church that had prayed for me - the very church where Jane and her children were traveling to on that fateful day.

I’ve endured many abuses and challenges in my life and little by little, God has peeled back the layers of my pain and healed all the deep wounds of my past. This was not a quick or easy process. I spent eight years working with a Christian counselor, building a support network of friends, and learning how to live a full and grace-filled life. I mourned the death of my son for twelve years and forty-four days – one day for each day of his life. In 2010, I reached the last milestone of my grief – the day my sweet child was now dead longer than he’d been alive. Through the long arduous process of healing, God created in me a loving heart sensitive to those who are grieving and he has provided opportunities for me to reach out to those who mourning – to journey with them through their grief as a friend and guide.

Over the past year, I’ve had the great privilege of working together with Jane in ministry. And just recently, on the thirteenth anniversary of the my son’s death, we stood side-by-side, laughing and working together at a ministry function. When the work was done, we parted with a hug.

I share this story because it’s the story God has given me to tell. The Lord has pulled me out of complete despair and brokenness, renewed me with grace and blessing, healed me completely, and reconciled two people whom the world would never believe could ever be reconciled. From beginning to end, my story is one of the miracle and grace of a great and merciful God – of a loving and powerful God who cares for each one of us so much that he sent his Son to save us and gave his Spirit to guide and heal us so that we may come to know him personally and love him deeply.

About the pictures:
Deer Lake Park, PA (October 2009)

1 comment:

Audrey said...

This is a wonderful story of life and living...and isn't that the wonder of it all! Through all of your pain and undescribable heartache came love and a new life for you. Again and again through both death and pain comes life and joy. God bless you,"Jane", and the
memory of your son.