1. Kim Peek died recently, December 19th, he is the original "Rainman". Reading his story is just captivating. (Also enjoy the linked articles) And as amazing as he is - I couldn't help but think about his extraordinary father. Dedicated his life to his son. Help to make his sons life full and rich and rewarding - and blessed others along the way. An extraordinary man.
2. Can't forget 'Team Hoyt'.
Fathers. Just extraordinary men.
3. And I love this story of the comman man. Rank and file - doing his best. Extraordinary. A father indeed.
A know a few myself.
And during this Christmas Season, I have thought about another Father and His Son. For unto us a Child was born...unto us a Son was given. Extraordinary. I scarce can take it in, actually.
It is a Madsen Cycle And they are having a give away. Awesome. Click here to read more about it. (Please click to the site for a chance for me to win, just one little click, but come back I want to talk more - thanks - you are awesome.)
You can see this awesome bike in action. HERE. (Scroll down through all the videos.) Awesome, huh? And if'n you want - you can also enter the contest, through twitter or Facebook. And if'n you win - AWESOME. And if'n you want - you could also GIFT your win to our sweet Shelley Sue and her peeps. Or keep it for yourself. (OR - the - best - idea - yet - win and gift THEN buy one for yourself. They are just awesome, don't you think?) Either way. Awesome.
Times AWESOME was used in this post (10)
AWESOME (11) Madsen Cycles are awesome (12) You are awesome (13)
Thanks for reading. Awesome (14).
HOPE I WIN....that would be AWESOME (15) Lucky 15.
I volunteer. Just once a week for six hours. I enjoy it....very much. Last week I was too - what was I? Upset, unable to think, distraught, worried, sad, consumed? Yes....all those. So. I didn't go in. This week...I am getting 'on with my life'...so I went. And I learned something.
Everyone was kind and concerned. Very nice. But the thing I learned.
Being sympathetic instead of trying to console - was more comforting, to me. Like sometimes, I unload on RR - I don't want him to solve the problem...just hear me out. Like that.
I talked to one sweet lady (honest she is darling) And she was so kind...quoted scripture - told me how it was for her and how she 'got over it'. Reassured me, we would all get over it. (We know 'get over it' isn't the word to describe what happens, but we come to terms with...learn to live with.) I KNOW THAT! I KNOW THAT! Really it was all kind. I don't want to sound ungrateful.
But I told another lady...a widow at a young age. Well, she was amazing. She just wrapped her arms around me and said..."Oh, that is terrible, just awful, oh, I am so sorry, you must be devastated." Then she wiped a tear from her own eye.
I don't know why but that was so comforting. You know how so many times we don't know what to say? And so sometimes we don't say anything - or even worse - stay away. Well.
I know what you can say. I am so sorry. I am so sad. I am just really so sorry this happened to you.
Them's some powerful words. They work - really well...and easy to remember.
And to 'get on' with living. To 'move on' well.......I feel like I am abandoning her. She may feel.... Like I might forget or worse yet, she may feel forgotten. There is comfort knowing this..The Lord has promised us that He will not forget us because He has “graven [us] upon the palms of [His] hands” (Isa. 49:16). But I also, want to do my part.
I feel guilty. Guilty for having my life. My life - like it has been.
I have a pile of laundry. Bills await payment. A dear patient husband...needs shirts ironed, and meals prepared. I must run that vacuum around a bit. So.. the business of living demands that I get back to routines and rituals that comprise my life.
In a book that was recommended to me at a time of loss and grief (and has since become a favorite), "A Grace Disguised" written by Gerald L Sittser after his mother, wife and daughter were killed in an automobile accident. Writes: "In other words, though I experienced death, I also experienced life in ways that I never thought possible before - not after the darkness, as we might suppose, but in the darkness. I did not go through pain and come out the other side: instead, I lived in it and found within that pain the grace to survive and eventually grow. I did not 'get over' the loss of my loved ones, rather, I absorbed the loss into my life....until it became a part of who I am, Sorrow took up permanent residence in my soul and enlarged it."
" Even in loss and grief, we can choose to embrace the miracle of each moment and receive the gifts of grace that come to us all the time. The present moment, this eternal now, is sacred because however painful, it is the only time we have to be alive and to know God."
May this family tragedy, help me, to know God...better - differently, more powerfully than ever before. And then this: (which has been an ever present thought as I have remembered how fragile life is. How fleeting, How precious.)
"Lose provides an opportunity to take inventory of our lives, to reconsider priorities, and to determine new directions."
As part of my personal evaluation and direction, will my life and the record here become endless entries about grief and loss and grace?
I don't think so - but...as I (our family) works through this devastating loss...it will probably be revisited. Because this loss is now part of who I am.
As a family, we are feeling every emotion. Our sweet Shelley, a widow, at 26. With three small children 4 - 2 - and 3 months.
My sister...the mother of a widow - my sister a saint.
I guess I just want to share a bit about this amazing sister of mine. When a young mother with seven children - the youngest just a baby, she found herself divorced, she came home to heal and try and pull 'it' together. She met a man - a widower with seven children - almost the same age as hers. She married this man and raised 14 children. That is not a typo...FOURTEEN children. Once the children with mostly raised - because of discovered abuse by the step-father she divorced him to protect herself and her children. But first..you need to know..that while married with fourteen children..their house burned to the ground. She lost every material possession they owned. Every picture - every little box and collection of everything. And had fourteen children at home (homeless) to raise. She should write a book, shouldn't she? She is too busy living her life, I guess.
Since then she has married a wonderful amazing tender man. We love him...he loves her. Isn't she the cutest thing you have ever seen? Several years ago, Jana (her daughters) husband was in an automobile accident and broke his neck. The doctors said he would NEVER walk - or be able to function as a father. We prayed...we have great faith. Here he is...he walks..and son number four is due in October. Now...don't get me wrong it hasn't been easy or without much effort and heartache and hard work and tears and Jared is still suffers many physical challenges because he has had a broken neck. But we have witnessed many miracles. (Isn't he handsome?) Rachel, my sisters daughter, when her baby, was tiny, had life threatening bacterial meningitis. Here is just a couple blog posts from our family blog during that terrifying time. November 30, 2006 I left the hospital at 11:00 last night. She was stable enough to go do
the CAT scan. What they said was: "It is what we typically see with
meningitis. There are still some fluid pockets around the brain. We
hope we can keep the swelling down. It is more than likely and we want
to plant the seed that there will be some damage. We don't know at this
point what or how much. We want you to be hopeful, but know that this
is very serious and little babies do not handle this very well."
A few days and multiple prayers later....
December 2, 2006 Thank you to our family for your fasting, faith and prayers. There is
NO possible way Kenadee should medically be progressing as fast as she
is. The Dr. said to imagine the biggest migraine and the worst flu you
could possibly have...that is how sick Kenadee is. Although she out of
intensive care she is still very, very sick. These pictures show the first time Rachel got to hold her after they took her off
life supports. You can see how puffy she is, but do know that it is all
part of the IV's ..The other concern we have is her leg is really
swollen tight, they thought it was a blood clot, negative....they are
calling in a specialist to see...so more hurdles to overcome. Please
continue to put her in your prayers. I feel guilty for asking, you
don't HAVE to...but would really appreciate it if you would. It is
amazing how you can feel, literally the power of prayer and fasting. Thank you again. Bev
Kenadee came home to her family by Christmas.
Here is a picture of Kenadee - normal in every way, active, amazing - from last week at our reunion with her Grandma, my amazing sister, a saint, Bev.
And now this. How do we go on? Oh.........our hearts are so heavy today. We are weary from crying. We are paralyzed with heartache. How do we not raise up and curse God, you ask - why? Why so much heartache in one family? Oh....no! Well, to be perfectly honest...we have and do. We question just how much can one little family endure...surely God could have prevented all of this from happening. Surely - He has ALL power. Surely....He could. And actually that is - our source of strength. We know He can do all things. And we trust. We trust that even though we do not know all the answers...we know that He does.
"Could the Lord have prevented these tragedies? The answer, is, YES. The Lord is omnipotent, with all power to control our lives, save us pain, prevent all accidents, drive all planes and cars, feed us, protect us, save us from labor, effort, sickness, even death, if he will.
But he will not....Is there not wisdom in giving us trials that we might rise above them...
Being human, we would expel from our lives physical pain and mental anguish and assure ourselves of continual ease and comfort, but if we were to close the doors upon sorrow and distress, we might be excluding our greats friends and benefactors. Suffering can make saints of people....
So - for a bit...I am preoccupied. I am praying..I am crying..I am mourning..I am strengthening my faith - that Heavenly Father watches over and blesses His children...in behalf of my sister - the Saint, and her sweet family.
Our family is one of GREAT faith. If you would like to join your faith and prayers with our faith and prayers. well, we also believe in the power of many prayers....calling down the blessings of heaven.