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Music Monday – When Tragedy Strikes…

Yesterday, I heard the news about the church bus that overturned in Indy and the lives that were lost in the accident. The grief must be unbearable. I don’t even know these people but as I prayed for the family and friends of the young, expectant couple who died leaving a toddler an orphan and the mom of 5, I cried. There are so few words that can be said. When my brother died at 16 from a gun accident, many words were said with good intentions but made it more painful none-the-less. The words that did get me through, though, were from those that were honest and told me that they don’t understand, either, it won’t make sense to us but God loves me and is there for me. So I went to Him over and over again. He doesn’t mind when we raise our fist and ask Him, “Why?” David did it. He was called a “man after God’s own heart” and God, while He called David out on a lot of stuff, didn’t rebuke him for expressing his fear, anger and sadness to God. When Scott died, I went back to college and the friends who knew what to say said very little. They held me, let me cry and told me to give it to God because He’s the only One Who knows what to do with it.

My Isabelle was admitted to the hospital at 4 weeks old the day Katrina hit. Having nothing else to do in a hospital room with an infant, I watched the news in horror. We were there 5 days as I watched my baby girl struggling to get and keep nutrition in her then turned to the TV screen to see people lose loved ones and suffer. It was then my favorite band decided to release early the following single from Wherever You Are to be an encouragement, to direct people to World Vision for donations and as a benefit for relief efforts. There has been so much tragedy in our nation and world. Catastrophe hits everyone at some point and the disasters and calamity will only increase as the world descends more and more into decadence and greed. Scripture tells us this. So what to say when friends and family are hit? Cry out to Jesus. For the families hurting so close to home in Indy, that’s all I have. I am so sorry.

This song is one of many Third Day songs that has blessed me and helped me through tough times. So many have been heartened by this. If you haven’t heard it before, I hope it blesses you. If you have, I hope it blesses you again.

What’s not shared is lost,

Michelle

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Music Monday: When It Seems Hopeless – Cry Out To Jesus

“Where words fail, music speaks.” I don’t know who said that but it’s true. There are no words that can adequately express the heartfelt sympathy so many of us wish to offer to the families and friends who have had their worlds shattered on Friday. My heart is turned inside out. Our family has been praying.

Get over it?

I started my day yesterday with a bee in my bonnet. It started out appropriately somber but then I peeked in on Twitter. My intention was to just post a simple remembrance as, I thought, everyone else does in honor of 9/11. I must be naive. I cannot believe the tweetabomination I witnessed. I believe people should be allowed to share their opinions, no problem there. But I also believe there are people with opinions that need readjusted for the sake of humanity. I’m just glad I know God is in the “readjustment” business and will take care of it. A gal I follow shared  this young attitude’s tweet who posted, and I quote, 

I had a pit in my stomach to begin with; I usually do on 9/11. This post made me sick. While it’s my contention, after perusing his profile and reading his tweets,  this kid didn’t get spanked enough as a, um, younger kid (save your anti-spanking lecture for another blog) and has a chip on his shoulder the size of Texas that will, most certainly, land him in the hospital, prison or the morgue, there’s not a thing I can do for this ungrateful, brain-damaged youth (except pray that he’s saved from a fire or car accident – caused by his marijuana activism – someday by a firefighter who read this particular tweet – yea…I can pray that).

What I CAN do is cancel out this ONE guy’s ignorance by making sure my TWELVE kids NEVER. FORGET.

SO, in lieu of our usual morning devotion, I gathered the 10 that were home around my laptop to watch this video:

There were tears. The older ones recounted what they remember. I shared how I found out: we haven’t had broadcast TV in years and we were finishing up our devotion time so the radio was off and we had no idea what was occurring. My Mom called almost hysterical. She knew my routine and knew I would, most likely, not be aware of the tragedy that had befallen us. We were still unsure if it was an accident or terrorism at that point. It was so surreal. And so frustrating! I couldn’t turn on a TV and see what was going on. I called my husband at work and they were all watching it. I called my mom back and we were on the phone as she updated me with what she knew and then the second plane hit. I heard my aunt yell in the background. My mom cried out and told me what happened. I started to cry and my confused kids were gathered around asking what was wrong. It was a blur then and even more-so, now.

I don’t know at what point we decided to go to the library but we did. I was surprised to find it open as time seemed to stand still; the city was SO quiet. We checked out books on skyscrapers, New York City and the Twin Towers. We went home and poured over our findings as we read together about the architecture of the buildings that had collapsed earlier that day. We had so many questions, like everyone else. Why would God allow SO many to die? Why the Twin Towers? I don’t need to list them all – everyone asked those questions. As we studied how the buildings were designed our discussion quickly switched to how many people were saved. This was before we heard of the many stories of folks who were late to work that day or had to call in sick. In case you missed it, if the Twin Towers had been built like most of the buildings in that day, they wouldn’t have fallen straight down. They would have collapsed over onto other buildings. Do you think there’s a chance that God had His hand on who would be the architect and how these buildings would be built since He knew what was coming? I do. Check it out, if you’re interested:

We have free wills, given to us from God. Therefore, free wills who choose to believe in and act on evil will be evil. That’s the fallen world we live in. We also live in a world of beautiful, courageous people as evidenced that day by firefighters and police officers trying to save others. We also have a God who loves us and plans for us. He planned how buildings would be made, what brave people would be needed on the planes to avert further catastrophe, a couple of fender benders to make some people late, I read of someone spilling coffee all over themself so had to run home to change clothes, the list goes on. I also know there are people serving our country attempting to prevent this from happening again. I don’t pretend to trust our government but I do trust the men and women serving our country.

It’s late and I’m starting to ramble. Let me cut to the chase – history is loaded with tragedy. From the Garden until now, pride, greed, anger, bigotry and other assorted forms of hatred have let people to commit incomprehensible acts against mankind. We should not be surprised when it happens. It seems as though it’s to be expected but we are shocked when tragedy strikes. We should be. We should visit history often, be shocked then thankful so we don’t become like the self-absorbed, apathetic, ungrateful, smart alleck  twitterbrat mentioned above and so we NEVER

Get Over It.

What’s not shared is lost,

Michelle

Farewell Aunt Corky

My Aunt Coralie died yesterday. Due to the fact that she hadn’t been to church in years and didn’t have friends, it was decided there will be no funeral. I have mixed feelings about my aunt and her passing away. She babysat me, came to the hospital when I had my first baby and brought a large, pink bunny due to Easter being the following week…I think she may have visited with at least one other birth. She was tickled each time I had a baby and just thought it wonderful we had so many. Somewhere along the line, she was introduced to alcohol and started drinking herself to death. When her health started to decline and she became near blind and housebound, unable to go out to get her booze, she replaced that addiction with food. She was already overweight but her drinking and dietary habits sent her body to the point of no return. I think she was 55. That’s pretty young, IMO. I was angry with her for awhile as her health became a burden on my mom. My mom took care of my bedridden Grandma and Grandpa for years and she found herself trying to take care of a bitter, miserable, sick alcoholic who was ungrateful and witchy to my mom all of the time. Yes, she had been sweet and still could be but alcohol ruins people. Though I would get angry at her I kept finding myself just feeling sorry for her and praying for her. I prayed she would remember the seeds planted when she had sought after God, was baptized and attended a church. I am heartbroken that a person can go through life only to come to the end friendless and feeling so miserable you’re willing to drown your sorrows in booze until it takes your life. I pray I live in such a way that friends and family will want a service of some kind to say goodbye not because I want to be popular, but because I want to be a blessing to others. This is not to say my aunt wasn’t a blessing. Obviously, I was blessed by her being my aunt or I wouldn’t feel grief. I just wish she had found herself by looking outside of herself and looking to God.

1 Peter 2:12
Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.

P.S. I Love You


My older daughters and I watched that movie last night and boo-hooed all over ourselves. It was one of those movies I should have previewed first – when will I learn?- and I wish we had had Guardian installed on our DVD Player – the language really was overkill, as usual in movies. BUT, the movie was otherwise, very well done in that it really tugged at the heartstrings and caused one to hate death the way we should. It was especially touching as a family in our area recently suffered the tragic loss of the husband and father after he fell from a ladder landing on his head. This father of eight died three days later. Yep, death sucks.

Sorry if that word offends but I chose it because “death stinks” isn’t heavy enough or exemplify the disgust I’m feeling so, death sucks. One thing that frustrates me about movies is when they ignore God in situations where even atheists would be forced to at least consider the possibility that God exists whether by pleading for help or yelling in anger to him. (Like Castaway! Any normal person stuck by themselves that long would at some point say, “God, if you’re there…”) P.S. I Love You did not pretend that God doesn’t exist and the main character, Holly, does ask, “Why did God kill my husband?” A valid question and I’m happy they included it among other questions of “Why?” And “why” do people have to die? Sin. Sin sucks, too. I’m sorry I’m not being very ladylike but I’m feeling ticked that MY sin is the reason people die, why I’ll have to die (should the Lord tarry) and why Christ had to die.

I’m also ticked that people choose sin instead of Jesus then whine about how God has been unjust. In a way, they’re right; it was unfair that Jesus had to die when He wasn’t guilty. It was unjust that he was tortured. It was unjust that He had to leave His Heavenly throne at all. But instead of being grateful, most folks are still hurling insults at Him and declaring “there’s more than one way to heaven!” If that were true, Jesus wouldn’t have had to come to die…duh. Many people say, “Why would God condemn the pigmies in Africa just because they didn’t get to hear about Jesus?” It’s not hearing about Jesus that condemns us – it’s our sin. Again, duh. If it was about knowing Christ, He could have stayed in heaven and saved us, and Himself, a lot of headache. IOW, if it was about knowing about Him that condemns us, His coming is what condemned us, not our sin. But, sorry, it’s our sin that does us in! Jesus has given us the way out. Without that, our “Why God?” remains unanswered. But with Jesus, the “Why God?” turns into “I understand….thank You. And, because of Christ, we can see our loved ones again.

“Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.”
Acts 4:12

“For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all.”
1 Timothy 2:5, 6

P.S. He loves you.