Saturday, January 10, 2009

January 10, 2009

I hope everyone is enjoying your 2009 so far. We have had a great first week of the New Year here at our house. We started back to school and we accomplished more this week than I think we have in the last couple of months. It always feels good to begin a new year on a good note. I am praying that the Lord will give us many more, good, productive weeks as we move through this New Year.

Well, I didn’t really intend to wait this long before posting about our 4 year celebration of Jonathan’s life. This particular event is so emotional for me that I wanted to get beyond those first few days, where every thought and remembrance brings tears to my eyes, so I would be able to share the events of that day without so much emotion. As I have said before, we are a very close family. We do almost everything together, especially because we home school. December 30, 2004 was a day that scattered our family in many places for the next 3 ½ months. It was the hardest part for me to handle. After we returned home, I read this Scripture:

Joel 2:25-27 - Then I will make up to you for the years that the swarming locust has eaten…And you shall have plenty to eat and be satisfied, and praise the name of the Lord your God who has dealt wondrously with you; then My people will never be put to shame. Thus you will know that I am in the midst of you (Israel) and that I am the Lord your God and there is no other; and My people will never be put to shame.

I have claimed this as a promise for our family that the Lord would restore to us as a family those days that were taken from us while Jonathan was in the hospital. Over these past 4 years, God has been faithful to that promise and has given us many precious memories together that will one day far outnumber those 3 ½ months we were apart. So every year, as God gives us the chance, we spend December 30 together celebrating God’s great power, His great mercy, and His great lovingkindness to us by celebrating the life of our precious son and brother.

Well, we got up that morning and spent the time getting ready to meet Dad for lunch. Jonathan called Uncle Timmy to come hang out with us for the day and he met us for lunch as well.

We went to one of our favorite places for lunch – Babes Chicken. After lunch, we went bowling while we waited for Dad to get finished working. We bowled a couple of games and had a great time. Jonathan actually beat everyone the first game! (He had a little bumper help!) It was great fun and we had a wonderful time.

We always love having Uncle Timmy hang out with us. Our families were such an important part of that difficult time 4 years ago. I don’t know what we would have done without them. Several of them took a night each week for 3 ½ months and stayed with Jonathan during the night so that we could go home for a few hours. When they weren’t staying at night, they were just there during the day to encourage Jonathan and us as we continued to watch God transform his mind and body with His healing power. Timothy was one of those people. He was the first one I was able to talk to and tell him that Jonathan was on his way to the hospital. He was there to take the girls and help distract them from the anxious thoughts of having a brother in the hospital, not really knowing the seriousness of what was going on. He still has some of the hospital visitor stickers with “Uncle” written them, hanging on his mirror at home. I am reminded of his faithful love and care of our family each time I see them. There is a very special bond of love that exists between Tim and my family – one that only God could have created. My children love him beyond words – especially Jonathan. So it was an added blessing to have him spend some of our celebration day with us that day.
After Dad got home, we decided to celebrate dinner by having the same meal Jonathan had the very first time he got to eat real food again – a hot dog and French fries from Sonic! It was a wonderful memory to celebrate. After dinner at Sonic we went to see a movie together and then returned home. It was another wonderful day spent together thanking God for the privilege of life together as a family.

God is so good. And He remains as faithful to our family today as He was to us throughout every moment of the journey He sent us on 4 years ago. As we celebrate Jonathan’s life and all that God has done in him, we celebrate and thank Him for all of you. God was honored and glorified through His amazing work in Jonathan’s life because all of you got down on your knees and prayed and cried out to Him on Jonathan’s behalf. You Believed God for His healing power and He answered. He remains faithful to hear and answer your continued prayers for Jonathan, even to this day. Like our families, we could not have made it through this journey without you. We love you more than words can express. Thank you for your faithful presence in our lives these 4 years. We pray that you will continue to walk with us and pray for us as God has much more to do in the life of this special young man. Praise God from whom all blessings flow!
2 Corinthians 1:8-11 – For we do not want you to be unaware, brethren, of our affliction which came to us in Asia that we were burdened excessively beyond our strength so that we despaired even of life; indeed we had the sentence of death within ourselves in order that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God who raises the dead; who delivered us from so great a peril of death and will deliver us, He on whom we have set our hope, And He will yet deliver us; you also joining in helping us through your prayers, that thanks may be given by many persons on our behalf for the favor bestowed upon us through the prayers of many.

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