Three years ago today will be the anniversary of my dad’s major car accident. I almost lost my dad and on the same day my brother was admitted into the hospital for a kidney stone. Two family members in the hospital in one day. I can’t even imagine what I was feeling. I remember writing this in my other blog at the time…

“My family needs major prayer. My brother was admitted into the hospital today for a kidney stone (yeah I know). Thirty minutes later, my sister calls me at work and tells me my DAD got into a car accident trying to get to my brother. While trying to race to see my brother, he went into a diabetic attack and his sugar level dropped… which puts his conscious level at totally drunk [even if he's not]. He swerved into the westbound lane going eastbound… which means he was going against traffic and he hit a school bus HEAD ON. He broke his wrist, pelvic bone, upper leg, shattered his knee, and has a huge, deep cut on his forehead. It actually made the news… it’s pretty crazy.  

He’s going to have pins in his wrist and in his knee for a long time… which means he’s pretty much out of work. Things are already financially tight. I don’t know what to do. Anyway I’m a complete wreck. Life is going to be very tough for the next few months.

 That whole year turned out to be excruciatingly financially tight. My dad couldn’t work and it took awhile for disability checks to start rolling in. We were sustained by meals brought by the selfless people of our church at the time. We were even going to move to Wisconsin at one point, but those were our plans… not God’s. After thhe house contract fell through, we pinched every penny possible to continue living down here. In addition to of all this happening, our home church {Grace Church} of 20 years shut down. We had literally no church family once they all moved away. Now, my dad is working 40 hours a week + occasional overtime, he is a lay pastor at Oasis Church, and he has a clean bill of health. He is not as fast and agile, but he is alive and knows that life is precious.

I can’t believe we made it through that year without going bankrupt. By the grace of God, we have amazing family and friends who have stuck with giving us rides, food, money, gift cards, visits, love, flowers, and all the rest. We even had one of my friends give us his CAR. His one and only car. I cry while I write this because of the magnitude of generosity we experienced. We could never ever pay any of them back, and to be quite honest, everyone at Grace knew we were going to be separated eventually and they weren’t obligated to do anything – but they did.

I really and truly miss Grace sometimes. I was looking in the photo albums and I started reminiscing. There are some pictures of me with kids I taught Sunday school and some VBS pictures, too. I miss the family feel the most. In a congregation of less than 100, you knew what everyone was doing. In some ways, that was irritating, but when someone was going through a rough time and needed help, they were swarmed with meals and visits and LOVE. I am determined to help everyone feel that way now in every part of my life. Everyone needs to know that they are going to be taken care of and they won’t be forgotten. I now know the importance of visiting someone in a hospital. I know the importance of a complete meal and gas tank that is full. I know the importance of simply sympathizing and buying the surrounding family Starbucks to help them get through the long night.  

Every year on February 27th, I personally celebrate a life that was spared. A life that is making a world of difference now. I love listening him talk to his new friend Vic on the phone {who also walks with a cane} from our North Miami campus at Oasis Church. He also calls an 85 year old shut-in named Jenny weekly to see how she is doing and gives her someone to talk to. She is a widow and she is lonely so I’m sure his company makes her happy. He also just recently volunteered to visit any Oasis church members that get hospitalized at Memorial Regional, the hospital he was in for 5 weeks. He is making a difference, one life at a time.


*This picture was taken the year after the accident. Aren't my mom & dad adorable??

I will never forget February 27, 2007… and I hope I never forget that life is frail and it needs to be celebrated.