‘Remember?’

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“Having eyes do you not see, and having ears do you not hear? And do you not remember?”

Mark 8:18 ESV

That word of Jesus leaps off the page to me, ‘remember.’

And His question comes back to me ‘And do you not remember?’ every single morning… how could I ever forget???

I hear You, Lord! I DO remember, vividly…

August 27, 2011… a day our family was forever changed… a day that marked us- and defined our faith.

Now, today, 8/27/18, it’s been 7 years, and I still stand amazed at what my God has done, and continues to do, each and every day.

Let me tell ya!

Because of what we went through, going from death to life, with the power of our tongues ONLY because of Jesus, and speaking the Word of God over our daughter, she is fully healed and alive today.

She’s married, (3 years this December), a registered nurse, and serving the Lord in the Peace Corp in Zambia with her husband Asa, declaring the marvelous deeds of the Lord- making a difference every day in the lives of others.

We have a deeper, stronger faith. We went through the flood, ‘the valley of the shadow of death’ literally, and our roots are firmly established in the revelation of a Father who never leaves us. NEVER.

We came through the ‘valley of the shadow of death’, when we emerged out of the deep end, and we have an awareness of God‘s abiding presence that forever changes the way we see impossible situations. NO one can tell me a situation is impossible when God’s involved, because I know otherwise!

Don’t ever settle for less than what God redeemed us from! Nothing is impossible with my Jesus!

God.

He was in the van with us. He was our ‘ever present help in our time of need’.

The moment we cried out ‘JESUS! Jesus, Jesus!’ He was right there, working on our behalf.

He sent His Holy Angels, who navigated my husband out of a treacherous situation… from the drivers seat, through a crushed door and broken window, glass everywhere… across LIVE POWER-LINES, in the pouring down rain- the Angels protection shielded him from harm, assisted him in getting her unbuckled and out of the pinned position of being sandwiched between the rear of her seat and the roof of our crushed van, over the the passengers side where both her Heavenly Father and her Daddy waited.

“Even if I go through the deepest darkness, I will not be afraid, Lord, for you are with me. Your shepherd’s rod and staff protect me.”

Psalm 23:4 GNTD

Honestly, when the tree fell suddenly on top of our van while we were driving, only five minutes from home… we were thrust into total darkness. The span of the tree so big, it covered our van… and the shield of our eyelids when we were thrown into unconsciousness also was utter darkness.

When my husband awoke first, his first instinct was survival and protection. Searching frantically for a cell phone to call 911, realizing the gravity of our situation he attempted to wake me, ‘WENDY! WENDY!’ he hollered my name multiple times. I seemed to hear him as if in a dream, with his voice sounding far away, though he was sitting right next to me…

My hand went to my head and neck, exploding in pain… then I heard these words:

“MORGANNE’S NOT BREATHING!”

These words reached into the depth of my darkness, my eyes flew open, heart was shocked into beating…dazed, seeing broken windshield and tree limbs covering us, trying to move my body around towards where our daughter was sitting, and then seeing her there… lifeless, like a rag doll, long arms and long hair hanging over side of seats edge alongside her knees…with the rear of her seat folded on top of her, the roof of the van pinning on top of her-I instantly was gripped by a level of fear and panic I never experienced before in my entire life!!! A sight forever branded on my heart and in my mind- not a day goes by that I don’t ‘see’ that gut-wrenching image…

I knew I needed to speak but the enemies grip on my throat was so tight it seemed literally impossible.

BUT GOD!!!

The power of the living Christ within me through my Helper, the Holy Spirit, arose a mighty spirit of faith. In fact, the very same power that raised Jesus from the dead was activated in me-and I cried out ‘Jesus!!! JESUS- HELP MY BABY GIRL!!’

As I twisted in my seat, I reached out my hand and touched her pulse, on her neck and wrist. THERE WAS NO PULSE! NO HEART BEAT!

Words of LIFE, God’s Word, started flowing off my tongue, guided by the Holy Spirit, as I laid my hands on her- ‘Morganne will live and NOT DIE, and shall give account of the deeds of the Lord! It is written! When believers lay hands on the sick they SHALL recover! We resist you Devil! We submit to God, you MUST FLEE! Go! Leave her alone! She will live and not die in Jesus Name!’

And we prayed in the Spirit, kept saying ‘Jesus! Life! Help our baby girl! JESUS! LIFE!

6 minutes from when we found the phone and called 911, she remained unchanged…Lifeless.

But our God breathed life back into her, by HIS Words we uttered over her.

She started to breath. And rescue arrived… they pulled her out of the narrow opening on the passenger side of the van; no time for jaws of life or crane to remove tree…

And took her to the emergency room. Praise God for first responders!!! We do, all the time!

Throughout our ordeal, a total of 13 initial days in two hospitals-finding out of her massive blood loss and brain bleeds, fractured skull, multiple hematomas and subdermal bleeds, major brain damage on both lobes and brain stem, hearing the words ‘1-5% chance of survival with little to no quality of life if she makes it’ , emergency ground medic transfer to MCV during the height of Hurricane Irene, followed by a 9 hour brain surgery then hooked up to life support for three days… we held tight to God’s Word and each other.

Our son and older daughter with us, we kept praying and speaking God’s Word of life over her. A nightmare for each one of us…only we ALL were living in the same one.

We fought the good fight of faith. We refused the reports we were hearing and only believed God’s. We kept on saying she would fully recover and that it would be expedient. Nothing else was acceptable. It didn’t line up to what we believed, and we believed GOD.

On the third day, she awoke, though her journey of recovery and HER fight of faith was just beginning.

It was soooo hard seeing her in pain! Seeing her swollen beyond recognition; all of her long beautiful hair, gone- replaced by vicious staples across half of her head… all a testament now of the incredible God we trust in and serve, and of her amazing strength.

Fighting severe pain, inability to see in one eye, unable to walk, she kept saying ‘I need to run!’ Even though she couldn’t even yet stand. Doctors and nurses told her ‘honey you need to understand that you have a severe brain injury. You can’t do what you used to be able to do. This is what having a traumatic brain injury is about, it’s for life, this is your new normal.’

Our feisty girls response? ‘Will you stop telling me what I can’t do when my God says I can do ALL things through Christ who gives me strength?!’

On the 13th day, against all odds, our daughter WALKED out of MVV to our vehicle, on her own two feet! She refused the wheelchair. Of course she refused it- she was making a statement without words, she didn’t need it!

The next day, she surprised her team at an invitational run; and on the way home stopped at the storage yard where the wreckage of the vans remnant remained… seeing her standing there, looking at the van, I knew we were looking at what a miracle looks like. Another image branded forever on my heart…

Two weeks later after intense physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy, and lots of prayer, she returned for a consequent brain surgery to reattach her bone after swelling went down… and after another five days of intense pain, and hospitalization at MCV, she was home again.

And, one month after original accident on September 30th, she returned to school- to all her advanced and AP dual enrollment college classes, and that afternoon?

Morganne ran with her cross country team!!! I’ll never, ever forget it.

The power of the tongue… Like a rudder on a ship- it’s so tiny in size yet it powerfully steers the direction of our lives by the words off our lip.

When we line up our words with God’s Words- life will always follow.

“What you say can preserve life or destroy it; so you must accept the consequences of your words.” Proverbs 18:21 GNTD

“Words kill, words give life; they’re either poison or fruit—you choose.”

Proverbs 18:21 MSG

This year is bittersweet, as we always commemorate this day with an anniversary dinner to honor God and thank Him for saving us, and for restoring our daughter back to life, miraculously… but with Morganne being thousands of miles away across the world from us, we will celebrate in two separate time zones, and in two parts of the world.

We will always remember, Jesus, what You’ve done for us. We will tell the world of Your goodness every opportunity we have-

‘We overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the words of our testimony’. (Revelation 12:11)

If I could encourage one person not to give up by ‘remembering’ and sharing what Jesus did for us, then our trial has been worthwhile.

Jesus Himself tells us in Mark 11:22, ‘Have faith in God.’ We live by faith., and never stop thanking Him for the incredible things He has done.

We remember…

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Humanitarian Godly Hands…

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A Word from God.

“I haven’t dropped you. Don’t panic.

I’m here with you.

There’s no need to fear for I’m your God.

I’ll give you strength.

I’ll help you.

I’ll hold you steady., keep a firm grip on you…

Don’t be afraid, I’ve redeemed you.

I’ve called your name. You’re mine.

When you’re in over your head, I’ll be there with you.

When you’re in rough waters, you will not go down. When you’re between a rock and a hard place, it won’t be a dead end- because I am God, your personal God, the Holy of Israel, your Savior.

I paid a huge price for you: all of Egypt, with rich Cush and Seba thrown in!

THATS how much you mean to me!

THATS how much I love you!

I’d sell off the whole world to get you back, trade the creation just for you.” (Isaiah 41:9-10; 43:2-4 MSG).

Gods Spirit keeps stirring within me on this subject…

Hands.

God took His hands and placed them into the dirt and formed man with His hand..

Jesus’s nail scarred hands hammered to the cross…

I carry that image in my mind daily…

He still feels the nails, every time I fail.

And every time I fall, those same hands pick me back up.

When I need comforting, His Hands pat me on my shoulder, embrace me in warm hugs.

When I’m sad and my eyes leak the emotions in my heart, His hands wipes every year, and collects them into heavenly bottles for Heavens purpose- never is a tear wasted.

When I’m in need of companionship, He places His hand in mine.

When I achieve a goal or reach a milestone, Gods hands applaud me, cheers me on.

When I’m sick, His hands are laid on me to heal me.

God said ‘See? I have engraved you on the palms of my hands. I have written your name on the palms of My hands… I have inscribed you on the palms of my hands….” (Isaiah 49:16 NIV, NLT, ESV, NAS, MSG)

God loves me.

So much that He permanently inscribed my name on His Hand as a remembrance.

He says “Can a mother forget the infant at her breast, walk away from the baby she bore? But even if mothers forget, I’ll never forget you— NEVER.” (Vs 15-18)

(And for the record- THIS momma can NEVER forget or walk away from her children she bore!)

God can never forget those He has engraved on the palms of His hands.

Every time He sees His own scarred hands, He sees you.

I’ll always remember the feel of my babies hands holding onto mine, and patting me with their hands.

That precious innocent complete act of trust…each one special to me- My mind replays thousands upon thousands of scenes in my memory bank of them… as infants, as toddlers, as preschoolers, as school aged children, as preteens, as teens, and as adults… That reassuring feel of comforting touch that hands bring-so special!

I wrote this three years ago as two different posts- on two different dates-yet today they have deeper meaning, more profound meaning for us today.

Today, we said ‘see you later’ to our daughter and son-in-law, who are missionaries heading to Africa for 2 years., serving in the Peace Corp. Watching MY baby, put her hands in her husband’s… Knowing their hands are firmly planted in God’s hands regardless of where, brings me comfort and peace.

This past weekend, watching all the gathered immediate family and extended family hold hands, shake hands, embrace in tight hugs with hands, patting love taps on backs with hands, reinforced to me how amazing and perfectly formed are our hands.

Seeing our sons shake hands with tears overflowing in church… seeing our daughters hold each other tightly in the tightest embrace while trying to be brave fighting off tears, losing because of a sibling love so strong LOVE wins…

Seeing grandparents, aunts and uncles, cousins hands interact with loving touches-

It is its own love language-

The language of Hands.

Today, these hands waved a proverbial farewell… but never a goodbye. Only see ya later.

As we trust in our God, who formed us with His guiding Hand, and protects us with His Hand- we know we send them off AS the hands of Christ.

In the months to come, their hands will become calloused from fielding the bush for food, carrying water buckets to and from the well for mile’s each day, forming a daily fire to cook and boil water, scrubbing their laundry, doing the work they were created and called to do.

These hands will encourage one another., and will work together.

These hands are anointed.

They will be used to praise and worship God high and lifted up. These hands will be used to clap as they sing with the locals. These believers hands will be used to lay on the sick, and the sick shall recover.

These hands will be used in acts of service- consecrated and dedicated to each other and to God.

Someday, these hands will hold our grandchildren, but for now, they hold all of our hope, love, and prayers.

But no fears, and no cares- Those were all cast to the Father God.

Little Children’s Imaginary ‘Friends’ Have Spiritual Purpose

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Often times, little children have imaginary ‘friends’.

To them, they ‘see’ their ‘friends’ as real people. They confide in them. They are content for hours spending time with them.

They talk with them, eat with them, play with them- as if they are REAL people.

Little children are given great imaginations by God! They love to sit on the floor and pretend real life situations and act them out.

They make up stories, acting out with dolls, or toy cars, or they ‘play’ house or doctor, policeman, cowboy etc.

Many times when my children were little, they’d say “Mommy, come play with me!”

And quickly they’d assign me a position-a role to act out “You be the mommy, I’ll be the baby.”

Without effort on their part, they’d come up with the most natural conversations as they play-acted. But for me, it was not as easy to ‘pretend’ anymore as a grown up.

I loved watching my children play alone content with their ‘imaginary friends.’

They’d be oblivious to me standing in the doorway,observing their conversations, lost in play as if I was the invisible one and their ‘friend’ was more real than me.

I believe God gave little children the gift of imagination, and especially imagination friends for a reason.

It teaches them at a young age to be comfortable with themselves talking out loud to an ‘invisible’ yet very important figure in their life they believe to be real.

Colossians 1:15 (NLT) “Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation”

The gift of a childlike imagination is from God. Children have innate unquestionable faith. They ‘see’ with the pure, undefiled eyes of faith.

Playtime for a little child with an unseen ‘real’ friend, is prayer preparation time with an unseen REAL God!

I believe God gave little children the gift of imaginary friends to allow them to grow comfortable talking out loud to their unseen friend/s, so that without question they will be able to ‘see’ Jesus, and talk with God whom they can’t see, but know is there.

When we ‘see’ Jesus as our real, personal living friend- when we become comfortable as as child talking with Him openly and anything and everything- we will ‘become as a child.’

“And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 18:3)