I had the day to myself, but was awaken at 3:45 am with the news that a friend's son was killed in a car accident. Suddenly, everything changed.
This child was 22. His family and our family took a vacation together back in 2002 or 2003.. maybe it was 2001 -- it was the ONLY time we took a vacation together. The only time we ever went on a vacation with another couple and their kids - surreal. That was a God appointed time, as all week we talked and shared memories about that!
My heart sank. Brendan's heart sank. His parents were our friends. Not our best friends ....but people our age. Our daughter is 22. Their kids and our kids were in youth together for MANY years. We sat near them in church for several years but then time, our own pride, and problems change things. When we moved from out home out on 441, we moved into their neighborhood -- we maybe saw each other 2-3x but again - our paths diverted.
But you know what did not divert? The love ...one feels for people - that love the Lord like you do....It did not matter that we did not meet each other every Friday for steak at the local spot -- they were still dear to us. And when we would see them at a restaurant or a gathering, there was always genuine friendship and love -- those are friends of Christ and friends forever...the kind that are 'low maintenance'. The kind that love between fellows that love the Lord is priceless and special.
We both, Brendan and I instantly felt their pain, deep.
Austin was his name..is his name.
Today is Friday and today was the funeral. Taylor shared what transpired with both of us at the funeral. Brendan and Hunter had gone to the viewing, but were unable to go to the funeral. I would of been at that funeral but on Monday, a low back pain began to creep up...and by Monday night, I was in bed hoping it was just a pulled muscle. Tuesday had me at school but by lunch time - in severe pain to which I headed to the doctor and then complete bed rest. By Tuesday afternoon I was hardly able to move and I was in pain. .....So, needless to say, I had a day off of school on Wednesday and that was my LAST sick day. I hated that....but, I was there in prayer!
BAck to Monday....God knew...I was able to spend time with HIM in pray and process the hurt and bewilderment upon hearing about Austin's death and then Taylor and I were able to visit his mom and dad.
That was hard and it sucks...it just sucks. It brought forth many memories of Blake's passing ( my nephew...whom Austin LOVED too! )
Taylor and Austin had been 7th, 8th, and 9th grade sweeties...notes being passed, they hung out and secretly....we all knew he liked her. She liked him too but Taylor had made a vow to herself back in 6th grade that no 'boy' was going to steal her heart in high school -- she had 'no time' for that. She allowed herself one boyfriend in 6th grade and he crushed her so she remained 'boyfriendless' for all those years of middle school and high school.
But Monday she found a few notes...a few of MANY she had saved from Austin and one of them to him said:
'Hey Austin, if I ever change my mind...is there a chance for me and you?'......He replied, 'Yes, I will always love you'.
Words said back in 7th grade...words that stuck deep.
I have prayed all week -- watched my own child grieve the loss of a close pal...and I have watched my community deal with Austin's death. It seems a senseless death.
However, as I said, as Taylor returned home today from the funeral - God brought beauty out of those ashes. She said the alter call was full...she said, "Austin preached his own funeral". Taylor had peace today and knew that she knew...He was with his Lord...covered by the blood.
My words would not give the service justice....God knew. Both Taylor and I spoke about God's plan and we know better than to try and understand God, but if Austin had the ability to 'sign up' before he came to this world as a baby....IF God would of asked, "Austin, you will lead a good life and I will bless you with much, but I need you to die young cause you can help save another 30 some of your friends ...would you do it?" And Taylor and I both knew, Austin would of said YES LORD! That was Austin.
Because of God's grace and Austin's testimony we believe that 30 some people will avoid hell for eternity. We are praying they hold true to their leap of faith!
I was unable to post Monday due to Internet problems that were not solved until Tuesday....
Then Tuesday I was flat on my back in pain.... God knows me too well.
HE knows I would of done what I needed to do to POST and make sure my 40 days of prayers were posted, but I believe HE allowed me to do a stupid thing on Monday which lead to my hurt on Tuesday and well....it is what it is. I was bedridden Tuesday, Wednesday and most of Thursday....As I believe God was just reminding me....to be vigilant and be in prayer and slow down!
This has been a FULL week....
Full...many lessons learned.
I stated in my last post that I felt God was also disciplining me too -- I may post that later....tonight it seems unimportant.
Tonight as I prayed on Monday...Lord, comfort like only YOU can...
HE is the great comforter, HE knows what it is like to lose a son -
Blessings this evening to Angela and Earnest and Sara King - Austin will be missed.
He - Austin was truly a gift from God. Amen.