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Posts Tagged ‘death’

When My Heart Stopped

It’s been almost 3 years since I last posted anything here. I don’t know if anyone is still following this blog, but if there is, I just wanted to explain my absence, and share my story.

On February 6, 2016, my 13 year old son, Christian, passed away in a tragic accident, and life as I knew it ended. My heart was still beating and my lungs still took in breath, but my mind went numb and my soul seemed to leave me. I was no longer alive.

I saw a post on a grief support group that said, “I died that day too, but they forgot to bury me”.  I thought, “how true”.

The “me I was” no longer exists, because that “me” had hopes and dreams for a future, one that included Christian in every aspect, a future that will never be. And so, that life ended.

A long time ago I said that my words were seldom polished or rehearsed, that I didn’t follow any fancy writing style, but that my writing came from the heart. But when your heart is shredded into tiny particles, words and thoughts don’t make any sense. Neither does life. So, I stopped posting. I did some journaling from time to time, but it was full of darkness and pain, not the kind of words to encourage hope and faith. I was dead inside.

CPR for My Soul

I woke up each morning and did whatever needed doing that day, but it was like watching someone else through a misty veil living a life that didn’t make any sense.

The next winter my Dad passed away and I slipped even further into the empty darkness. In just a few short years I had lost so many family members, I was beginning to feel like Job from the bible. And I kept begging God to take me too, but He didn’t.

About a month after my Dad passed, my pastor’s Dad also passed away unexpectedly. Being a pastor, he upheld a face of dignity and faith, and on the surface he showed great strength. But when I looked into his eyes one evening shortly after his Dad’s funeral, there was a reflection of pain that I knew all too well. When Christian died my pastor had said he couldn’t even imagine what I was feeling. But that evening as we talked about his Dad, I knew he now understood, and a connection was made.

I felt compelled to try to offer a sense of comforting, but I had none to give. Or at least so I thought. My pastor is a man I have always looked up to and felt a deep respect and admiration for (and still do). So when he told me that evening that he felt inspired and hopeful because of the strength and faith I had shown, I felt a little awkward and insecure. But I listened, and we exchanged a few memories and stories.

Later, I saw 2 memes on Facebook that I knew I had to share with him. One said, “Someone had to go into the fire in order for Nebuchadnezzar to see God” and the second said, “God uses broken people like you and me to fix broken people like you and me”.

I understand now that every one of us goes through all kinds of struggles, trials, and pain throughout our lives. But we have a choice in how we react to it. We can allow it to consume and destroy us, or, we can allow it to be used to help someone else, even if only to listen and try to understand on some level.

Many times in the past few years I’ve asked God what He wants me to do. I don’t know how I got the idea that He would speak to me in a loud booming voice and give me step-by-step instructions on what to do (probably too much Hollywood and not enough Holy Bible), but that is not how He answered.

I kept finding myself coming to these bible verses, and it finally occurred to me that these are God’s instructions for me:

“And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.” (Mark 12:30-31 KJV)

“Commit thy works unto the LORD, and thy thoughts shall be established.” (Proverbs 16:3 KJV)

Coming Back to Life

I have been broken by my grief and there are many pieces of my heart that are gone now. But it has opened my eyes to others that are hurting, and it has stirred compassion in a heart that I thought was dead. That spark of compassion led me back to writing, to share hope and encouragement in any way I can.

I know I will never be the same person I used to be. But in my heart and in my writing, I am coming back to life. It will not be easy, but the journeys that make good stories and testimonies never are.

My goal here is to make connections in sharing our journeys, to lift each other up with stories and prayers, to share hope and smiles where they are needed most.

Since I have forgotten practically everything about the functions on how to run this site, I appreciate your patience as I get reacquainted with the workings. I plan to begin posting a couple times a week and look forward to your feedback. As always, please feel free to share, leave any comments, questions, prayer requests, etc. I welcome the interaction!

God bless!

– Amber Lea

 

 

 

 

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Imagine you are at the end of your life. Today is your last day. What legacy will you leave behind?

It’s not exactly a cheerful thought, thinking about our own end. And for the young, it may seem a long way off. But then again, we never know when our time will come. So what do you want to be remembered for?

If today was your last day, what would you do with it?

Perhaps it’s because I’m getting older (I’m not quite ancient yet, but…) I sometimes ponder these things. Perhaps it’s because I wonder what the future will be like for my children. I do not fear my own death, because I know where I’ll be going. But I sometimes wonder what my family and friends will remember of me. Have I made any difference to them?

I have never chased after fame and fortune, although a little more fortune in the financial area would be much appreciated. But when I look back over my life, I realize the majority of my time and efforts have been centered around relationships with others. But do those relationships matter? Will they be remembered? I hope so.

My family and friends have always been important to me. So after the loss of several members of my family over this past year, I’ve been doing a lot of reflecting on those relationships. I ask myself, “Did they know how much I loved them?” “Did I make them feel like they were important and treasured”?

I think about the people I will leave behind when I am gone. What imprint will I leave on their heart? And I ask myself, “What do I want them to remember about me?”

There are times when I look at the world around me and think about what I like or don’t like. I think about the things I would like to change. I would put an end to things like hate, oppression, poverty, and hunger. But how? I am only one person, what difference can I make?

I cannot change the world. But I can teach my children how to love others, by showing them my love. I can teach my children how to be just and fair, by how I treat them and those around us. I can teach my children how to be generous and giving, by my own examples. And I can teach them how to share hope and encouragement by sharing it myself.

The world doesn’t know my name, and I may be forgotten entirely in the years to come. But what I leave in the hearts of my children, my family and friends, will be remembered, at least for a while.

The memories I leave may not be a huge thing by themselves, but if they are shared, they can grow.

So if today is my last day, I will spend it loving my family and friends. I will help with whatever needs to be done. I will encourage love and hope in Jesus. These are the things I am spending my time on today. And tomorrow, if it comes.

There is a saying, to “Live each moment as if it were your last”. That is the way I want to live today. I want to give all of my energy, time and love to those around me. I want to make their lives more joyful in any way I can. I will love God with all my heart, and do my best to glorify Him.

Will the world remember me tomorrow? Probably not. But perhaps it will come to know my children, my family, or my friends.

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Dear Friends,

As some of you may know, I took some time off for a vacation to visit with my son and daughter-in-law in Texas, and then off to Virginia to spend some time with my parents. I arrived back home on Friday morning, then received news that my Mom passed away Saturday morning. I have returned to Virginia and do not know when I will be posting again.

I know my Mom is with Jesus now, no longer in pain or suffering, but free. It was said that she had been holding on, waiting to see Christian and I again. It had been almost 7 years since our last visit. She went peacefully in her sleep, and I am so very thankful that we got to spend time with her before she passed. I will always treasure our memories and the love we shared with her.

I allowed distance and cost to become obstacles preventing more frequent visits with those I love, and it is now a deep regret. Even though money was still an issue, God stirred my heart with a sense of urgency to come. Then He provided a way to make it happen, proving once again He is all knowing and a compassionate God. My Dad told me that our visit gave Mom peace and comforted her.

My heart is aching, but I know I must be strong now, for my family. I do not have any more words right now, except to say: never take the moments you have for granted because they will never come again, and never pass up the opportunities to say “I love you” because it may be your last chance.

Rest in peace Mom, rejoice in the presence of Jesus, and we will see you again someday. You are forever in my heart! Thank you God, for giving me the privilege of being her daughter!

 

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“Am I at home on earth, or am I still in heaven?” This was the question asked by a little boy after being revived from a fatal accident. Do you believe in miracles?

In honor of Thanksgiving, “Faith, Hope & Miracles” by Amber Leggette-Aldrich will be made free on Amazon.com (Kindle version) November 22 and November 23, 2012.

This is a true story of a family’s journey from tragedy to miracles and blessings. After witnessing the death of her 8 year old son Christian in a tragic accident, Ms. Aldrich describes in detail his miraculous revival, followed by more miracles in his recovery.

“In 25 years of being a paramedic, I have never seen anyone with these kinds of traumas that survived”, said 1st responder Glenn Stevens of Matanuska Borough Emergency Services during the 2012 Alaska EMS Symposia. Dr. B.J. Coopes, head of the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at Providence Hospital in Anchorage Alaska said, “There was nothing normal about the resuscitation or recovery in Christian’s case”.

But perhaps the most astounding elements are Christian’s encounters with Jesus and what he saw in heaven during the 40 minutes before he was resuscitated.

Christian slept for about an hour and then woke up again. As soon as he began to stir, I took his hand and he opened his eyes and looked at me. He asked, “am I at home?” I said, “no honey, you are in the hospital”. He said, “no, am I at home on earth, or am I still in heaven?” A chill went through me as I began to realize the full scope of what I was hearing. I told him he was on earth and that everything was going to be alright. He became extremely agitated and grabbed me. He looked me right in the eyes and said, “Why did you take me away from Jesus? I didn’t want to come back, I wanted to stay with Jesus!”

In her 1st book, “Faith, Hope & Miracles”, Ms. Leggette-Aldrich shares the emotional impacts of her son’s journey in a way that is sure to inspire and encourage the reader. Is Jesus real? Does He still do miracles? Is there hope? You be the judge.

5 Star Reviews for “Faith, Hope & Miracles”:

“…The strength of this family’s faith was awe inspiring, as it was apparent from the start that the writer’s belief and trust in God is what kept her going. It made me reconsider just how strong my own faith really is…I used to wonder if miracles really happened anymore, but now I am positive they do! Thank you for sharing this beautiful work with the world Ms. Legette-Aldrich!” (Jason Robinson)

“I could not put this book down. I could actually feel the fear, pain, suffering, and yes, hope, of Christian’s parents. My heart went out to them. What a miraculeous recovery!…” (Yvonne Leggette)

“…Amber Leggette-Aldrich, (with her gift of superb authorship from God), is the gracious, fluent, flowing, experiential and narrative author of this wondrous story…As you read this marvelous story, you will be so blessed and will feel the emotional experiences of life-accident-death-miracle—>life.” (Don & Clara Zachary)

For a limited time only, get a free Kindle version of “Faith, Hope & Miracles” by Amber Leggette-Aldrich at http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008J0Z2FQ

 

 

 

 

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Don’t Cry Me A River, Help Me Dig A Well!

The haunting images of eyes glazing over with death as a child dies in your arms; the shrieking and wailing of mourning announcing the death of another family member; the sickening stench of contaminated living areas; this and much more is a daily way of life for too many.

The main culprit of this devastation is the lack of access to safe, clean water and sanitation. 1.1 billion people in the world do not have access to safe drinking water. And 2.2 million people, most of them children, die each year from diseases related to unsafe water and unsanitary living conditions. This is a global water crisis, but there is a remedy.

There’s an old saying, “Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for lifetime”.  What if that same principle was applied to the need for clean water? What if in the process of helping to provide the water, we could also provide skills to provide employment? This process could then be duplicated by the very people being helped, which in turn could be used to help others.

There have been technological advances that have created the means to install safe water wells and pumps, in a very affordable and feasible fashion. The materials used to build these wells and pumps are available nearly everywhere at a very reasonable cost. Once the local people are shown how to dig the wells properly and install the simple pumps, they not only have the means to provide fresh, clean water for themselves, but they can use the skills they have learned to help provide the same for others. This increases the rate at which this water crisis can be resolved.

If you could save a child from the agony of slow death, wouldn’t you try?

All too often the general response to this issue is “Well what can I do about it” or “What difference can I make”? Believe me, there is so much that can be done! It all begins with having the heart to care enough to want to help.

Many Christians consider the phrase “What would Jesus do?” when seeking guidance and direction. I think it’s fairly obvious what He would do here. I imagine He might also say, “Don’t cry me a river, help me dig a well”. While it may not be possible to go and help physically dig, you could sponsor a well with only a small donation. Be a hero, save a life.

For more information and to find out how you can help, please visit http://water4.org/simple-solution/

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The Trials of Life

By Amber Leggette-Aldrich

 

But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.” (1 Peter 5:10)

“…May your character not be a writing upon the sand, but an inscription upon the rock! May your faith be no “baseless fabric of a vision,” but may it be builded of material able to endure that awful fire which shall consume the wood, hay, and stubble of the hypocrite… May your whole life be so settled and established, that all the blasts of hell, and all the storms of earth shall never be able to remove you. But notice how this blessing of being “stablished in the faith” is gained. The apostle’s words point us to suffering as the means employed–“After that ye have suffered awhile.” It is of no use to hope that we shall be well rooted if no rough winds pass over us. Those old gnarlings on the root of the oak tree, and those strange twistings of the branches, all tell of the many storms that have swept over it, and they are also indicators of the depth into which the roots have forced their way. So the Christian is made strong, and firmly rooted by all the trials and storms of life. Shrink not then from the tempestuous winds of trial, but take comfort, believing that by their rough discipline God is fulfilling this benediction to you.” (Spurgeon’s Devotionals)

Suffering. Not so pleasant a thought. Certainly it is not something that anyone would desire. Yet it is through the suffering that we, as Christians, are made strong. Think about a chunk of coal. After many years of tremendous pressure, it becomes a beautiful diamond. It is from the pressure put on us during our times of trials and suffering that we are being perfected for God’s Kingdom. It is through our faith and trust in God that we have the strength to go through the storms, knowing that there is victory on the other side.

In my book, “Faith, Hope & Miracles”, I shared some of the toughest trials a person could go through. But my faith gave me the strength to go through it all. I endured the suffering because God gave me hope in the knowledge of His eternal love. There were times when I said, “In spite of the storm, I am strong”. But now I know that it is because of the storm that I am stronger.

After the storm comes the rainbow. God gave me the privilege of witnessing and sharing in a precious miracle. It has been a privilege and joy for me to see the impact in people’s heart in sharing that miracle. What a blessing it is for me to share God’s love and goodness, not only when life is good, but even more during the trials!

“Faith, Hope & Miracles” is available at  http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008J0Z2FQ

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For Jason

By Amber Leggette-Aldrich

The temperature outside was in the 90’s, something I was not accustomed to. The air inside was much cooler, but I did not want to go in. I remember the room was filled with so many people, ranging in age from 7 to 70 plus. They were all very kind and most seemed very caring and friendly. Some I knew, others I did not. Music was playing softly, but I did not hear it. My eyes were focused on the floor as I was led to my seat, I didn’t want to look.

A man began to speak, but I couldn’t focus on what he was saying at first. My thoughts were drifting somewhere else. A flood of memories was filling my head, memories of the first time I saw you, and the last. It seemed like it had been forever, so many things had happened. My head began to clear a little and I began to look around. The faces were all very somber now.

The man speaking was the youth pastor. He was talking about what a treasure you were to the youth group, and how your smile would light up a whole room. He spoke about how enthusiastic you were, not only in the group, but in the services too. He said your dedication to serving the Lord, the church and the community was inspiring to all who knew you.

Next, the pastor got up to speak. He was an older man with a soft and gentle way about him. He talked about how it had always touched his heart to see you at the door greeting the congregation as they entered. He said you were always one of the first to arrive, and one of the last to leave. He shared a story from just a few weeks earlier, when you told him you were looking forward to going home. He said it was apparent you were speaking about Heaven, but he said he smiled and told you that you still had many years to come. Tears began to fill his eyes as he said, “but looking back, I think Jason knew”. He couldn’t speak anymore, and the choir was asked to sing.

A short while later we were all gathered outside. It was a beautiful setting, and there were lots of flowers. One arrangement that caught my attention had been made in the shape of a saxophone, your instrument of choice. I remembered the private “concert” you and Daniel had put on for the family when you were first learning to play. As hard as I tried, I could not swallow the lump I felt in my throat.

Standing there beside your final resting place, I could not fully absorb the fact that my firstborn son was gone. I was consoling myself with knowing that you were in Heaven, but it still felt as though I was in a bad dream and I kept waiting to wake up.

From the moment I had received the news of your death until after the funeral, everyone around me seemed so concerned about the possibility of my grief causing me to lose the unborn child I was carrying. For their sake, your brother Daniel’s, and your unborn brother’s, I tried to be strong. I even managed to smile as people came up to me to give their condolences. But in truth, I had just gone numb inside, and I wanted to stay that way. I didn’t want to think about anything.

After the funeral I was kept busy. There were still unfinished projects to get ready for the new baby, and the salmon runs were beginning. That meant it was time to get all the smoking and canning stuff out and ready. Even though I hate salmon, I looked forward to filling the jars and the smoker. It kept my mind occupied. I worked until I was too exhausted to stand anymore, and then stayed up half the night on the computer. I didn’t want to sleep because I didn’t want to dream.

Just over a month after your funeral, your brother Christian was born. And when I looked at his shining little face the first time, I saw you. The last words you had said to me the day before you died were, “I’m really looking forward to meeting my new little brother”. As I was thinking about those words, a feeling came over me and it was like you were there with us. I felt peaceful for a moment, filled with such a strong love. It was overwhelming.

I never told anyone but the night Christian was born, when no one else was around, I cried for you even harder than I had when you died. And part of me felt guilty. I was being torn between the extreme sadness of missing you, and the extreme joy of having this precious new baby. I didn’t know what I was supposed to feel, but my insides felt scrambled. I thought about some things that I regretted not doing with you or not saying to you when I had the chance. It taught me to never miss an opportunity to say “I love you”.

Ten years have passed as of today, and I still miss you. But I know I will see you again. When Christian died and came back, he told me he met you in Heaven. I have no words to describe how that made me feel, but something tells me you already know. God has given me strength when I didn’t know how to go on, and He’s given me comfort and a peace that only He can give.

God blessed me with 3 beautiful boys, and I am thankful to have had the gift of being your mom, even if only for a little while. I am glad beyond words that you found Jesus and hung on to Him in faith, and that you are there with Him now. I know that you are alright, and it helps make me alright. You brought so much joy to so many, and inspired many more with your love for Jesus. I will treasure that always.

Jason, you were my precious firstborn, and you will always be in my heart. Not one day in 10 years has gone by that I haven’t thought of you, and loved you and missed you. It took a while for me to see it, but God has taught me that you have always belonged to Him. He only let me borrow you for a time. He sent you here for a purpose, and then He called you home. While I may wish that you could have stayed longer, I have come to accept that things must be in God’s time and in His ways. I believe His ways are perfect, even if I can’t always see it. In your own way, you helped me to learn about what real faith and real love means. And I am thankful for that. And I am doing the best I can, with God’s guidance, to help pass that faith and love on to your brothers. I will love you always Jason! – Mom

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Are You Prepared

by Amber Leggette-Aldrich

Have you ever been in a situation where you were planning for a very special occasion, something like a first date or a special anniversary? Or perhaps a long awaited vacation or weekend getaway? Did you plan and spend time preparing, desiring that everything be just right? Most of us would try our very best to be prepared, to look just right and have everything in it’s place, ready for the event, wanting everything to be just perfect. In fact, we make plans and preparations for many things in our daily lives. And most of us have at least on a few occasions gone through a good deal of time and effort, preparing to look and be our best for someone. But do we do that for Jesus? Are we prepared to meet Him?

The bible gives us pretty clear instructions on what we must do in order to prepare ourselves (our hearts and souls) for Him:

In Acts 2:38 it says, “…Repent and be baptized, every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost“. (KJV)

Ephesians 2:8 tell us, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: ” (KJV)

And Acts 4:12 says, “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (KJV)

Of course this is only a small part of the bible’s instructions for our preparation. The bible also makes it very clear what will happen to us if we are not ready.

The LORD is known by the judgment which he executeth: the wicked is snared in the work of his own hands. Higgaion. Selah. The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.” Psalms 9:16 & 17 (KJV)

Let death seize upon them, and let them go down quick into hell: for wickedness is in their dwellings, and among them.” Psalms 55:15 (KJV)

Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?” Matthew 23:33 (KJV)

And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.” Revelation 20:15 (KJV)

All too often the thought of where our souls will spend eternity is put off, not taken seriously, or just not thought about at all. We use excuses of being too busy with everyday life, saying things like, “I’ve got more important things to do right now; I’ll take care of it later, when I have time”. But this is something that simply cannot wait until later! What if there is no “later”?

We have all heard stories of how things can happen in “the blink of an eye”. Think about that phrase for a moment. See how long it takes to blink; it doesn’t even take a full second of time. But that is how fast life can end! And most of the time we never see it coming. My son Jason was young, strong and healthy, but was struck without warning with a massive heart attack and died instantly. One minute Christian was an active 8 year old boy having a good time riding his snowmobile, a minute later he was pinned under the tire of a truck being crushed. A while back a friend of mine was killed when the engine of a car he was working under fell on him. Another man recently died suddenly in Big Lake of an embolism. We hear stories like these all the time, but somehow still manage to deceive ourselves into thinking, “that won’t happen to me”. But I ask you, why not? I don’t mean to be morbid or a doomsayer, but the truth is we will all die, sooner or later! And none of us knows the day or the hour, or the where or how of it.

So are you ready to meet Jesus? Is your heart right with Him? Have you been baptized in Jesus name and received the gift of the Holy Ghost? If so, halleleujah! Now what are you doing to reach out to others and helping them to get ready? And if you are not ready to meet Jesus, why not get ready right now? Don’t put it off any longer and risk finding yourself at His feet saying, “I want to do it now” and hearing Him say, “now it is too late”!

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Good morning! I have been away for quite some time now, but have made my way back. And I have an incredible testimony to share of God’s goodness, grace, mercy and power! It is a story of many miracles, and it is my prayer that many hearts will stirred to connect with our wonderful and mighty Lord, Jesus Christ.

Have you ever had questions about heaven, or wondered if Jesus is really there? Do you or someone you know have doubts about all this “Christian stuff”? I cannot promise you that I have all the answers. But this much I can promise…Jesus and heaven are real, and if you open your heart to His truth and seek Him with all earnesty, you will find Him!

In previous posts I have shared a little of the effects that my children have had on my heart. Perhaps God knew that it would take a child’s touch to have such a strong impact on me, resulting in a faith and love that surpasses anything I had ever imagined. I cannot explain God’s reasons for the ways that He chooses to work, so I will simply share this story, for His honor and glory. For time and space, I have to give the condensed version here.

The Accident

On November 13, 2010 my 8 year old son, Christian, was killed when he was run over by a pick up truck. The truck ended up with it’s back tire sitting directly on top of his chest, crushing his lungs and stopping his heart. I arrived at the scene of the accident within a minute or so after the crash, and I held Christian’s head (the only part of him that I could get to) and kept repeating over and over how much I loved him. As I prayed harder than I have ever prayed, I watched as my baby died in my hands. I cried out to God and said, “I believe in You and trust You. I know You are mighty and capable, and I am putting my baby into Your hands, and I know in my heart that You will heal him and make him whole again, if not here on earth, then in heaven”.

It was nearly 20 minutes before the first of the emergency responders arrived. As the truck was lifted up with a winch, the paramedics had to shovel out the snow from around Christian to get to his right leg which had been wrapped around the back axle and almost torn from his body. Once he had been pulled out from under the truck, CPR began and continued for 40 minutes. I do not know all of the details of this time, except that tubes were placed into his lungs and injections were administered directly into his heart. A faint pulse was finally achieved, and Christian was flown by helicopter to the hospital.

The Hospital

After many hours had passed, the head doctor of the pediatric intensive care unit came to us. She told us that in spite of all their efforts, there was just too much damage and that Christian would not live through the night. His lungs had been crushed, his heart was badly bruised and damaged, his liver and bowels were bruised and swollen, 2 ribs were broken, his brain was swollen and surrounded by fluid, and his lower right leg was hanging by a thread of skin and a vein. We were told to go be with him and love him while we could.

In the meantime, prayer requests had been sent out all over the country. By the end of the day, there were thousands of people praying for Christian and our family. I’ll never know the exact number or who they were, but I am truly thankful to them all!

Since it was believed (by the doctors) that Christian would not live, there was no attempt to perform surgery on his leg at the time. When he was still holding on the next day and some blood flow had actually returned to his foot, an orthopedic surgeon said that if Christian survived, the leg could be amputated later.

Christian remained in a coma for 4 days, barely hanging on to life. But as his vital signs began to improve a little, the first surgery on his leg was performed on the 4th morning. The doctor had decided to try to save the leg, but didn’t seem overly hopeful. That same night, Christian came out of the coma! A respirator was still breathing for him, and he was hooked up to every kind of machine imaginable. The neurosurgeon said that there would probably be severe brain damage due to the impact and going without any oxygen for almost an hour.

On November 20, the respirator was removed and Christian was finally able to talk. During the previous week I had been told (and already knew in my heart) that it was miraculous that he had even been revived, but to be healing and recovering at such a rapid rate was unbelievable to all of his doctors. But the most miraculous thing was what he said once he was able to talk. He asked me, “am I still in heaven”? When I answered no, he became agitated and asked, “why did you take me away from Jesus, I did not want to leave Him”! Later he described brief memories from the accident, after he had died. He also described “coming down the stairs”, to which he later added that his older brother Jason (who had died the month before Christian was born) had led him down the stairs from heaven. Christian said that Jason told him it was not time for him yet and that he would see him again someday.

To the complete amazement of all of his doctors, Christian was released from the hospital 20 days after being admitted! His heart, brain, lungs, everything except his leg was totally healed.

Full Recovery

Christian’s recovery has been published in several medical reports over the past 16 months and is still being talked about in the medical communities. One report that I heard was from a conference of over 500 doctors. It was stated that there are 2 categories: one of what medicine can do, and one of what medicine can not do. Christian’s case was listed in the “cannot do” category, and his recovery was attributed to “Divine intervention”.

Christian’s leg required several surgeries over a 1 year period, including 2 bone grafts, a skin graft, and a titanium plate placed over the shin area. For a little over 4 months, his leg was held together with 2 fixators screwed directly into the bones and he suffered from severe nerve pains as his leg was healing. He had permanent scars and his right foot is now somewhat smaller than his left foot. The tendons and ligaments were extremely tight, causing his foot to turn inward, but with stretching and exercise have become almost completely normal and he is now able to run again, with only a slightly noticable limp. Even this is expected to return to normal in time.

Throughout this entire ordeal, our faith and trust in Jesus has strengthened. He has carried us through, giving us peace and comfort in a time of great trials. In spite of his pain and suffering, Christian remained positive and confident in God’s ability to heal him. In his own words, Christian often said, “I know God is with me, and He is going to make everything alright”.

In Conclusion

One of the hardest and greatest lessons I have learned from all of this is that I am not in control. I had to learn to put my comlete faith and trust in God, to know that it is His will that must be done, even when I don’t understand it. To walk by faith and not by sight, trusting that God is watching over us and He will work everything out for good in the end brings an unexplainable peace and comfort to my heart. I felt God’s presence in and around me when I began to pray with all my heart at the accident, and I knew He was there with us. I witnessed a miracle that day, and I have been privileged to watch God take the most horrible scene I have ever watched and turn it into many miracles and blessings over this past 16 months.

There are far too many details of this story to put it all down here. But it is something that I know in my heart must be shared. It is my passion to share what God has done, and is doing, for He is truly a mighty and holy God! It is my prayer that every heart be opened to seeking and finding Him! And if it is His will, the full details of this story will be published, to honor and glorify Him.

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Just One More Day

by Amber Leggette-Aldrich 2/10/2010

In the hustle and bustle of the modern day, we tend to rush along in the fast pace of what we call “life”. We hurry from here to there and through this and that. We dream and make plans for the future, and we say “someday”. We wear ourselves out trying to fulfill obligations and get everything done that needs doing. So we take vacations. But then we fill up the vacation with so many things to do in so little time, we end up even more exhausted when it’s over. No wonder life is referred to as a race! But is it a race that we really want to win? After all, when a race is won…it’s over.

When the race is over, how many of us will look back on our life and think “What an awesome race. I’m glad I finished!” How many of us instead will think “I wish I had done more of this and less of that” or “I wish I could have just one more day”.

What if you knew you had just one more day. What would you do with it? Would you spend it getting all your affairs in order? Perhaps you would spend more time with your loved ones, or calling all your friends. Would you spend time in the presence of God? Most of us would probably spend those last few hours on what was most important in our hearts.

The point is that none of us know exactly when our race will be over. We never know when it will be our last chance to tell someone we love them. We don’t know when it’s our last chance to share a kind gesture or word to a friend that’s feeling down. Perhaps it is their last day. Did they know that we cared? How many times are the funeral homes filled with flowers, but the body is unaware? Did they ever receive such adoration while they were still alive to enjoy it? When a parent dies, do they know that they were the greatest inspiration in their children’s lives? When a child dies, do they know that they were the greatest gift to their parents? If the world and people were perfect, they would know.

However, none of us are perfect. We forget. We stumble. We overlook. And at times we need to be reminded of what is truly important. So ask yourself, what is truly important to you? My personal answer is from the Bible:

“And now abideth faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” (1Corinthians 13:13)

The majority of my life was spent going here and there and doing this and that. I accomplished many goals and tasks. But I never really thought about what was truly important to me…until I lost it.

On May 24, 2002 I received an email from a friend. She didn’t know it at the time, but my son Jason had just died the day before. The email contained a poem that was said to have been written in tribute to the victims of the September 11 attacks on the U.S. But 3 years later, I discovered the name of the author and that in fact, she had written the poem after losing her own son, which made this poem even more personal and special to me. It made me realize that the most valuable and important thing in my life is the love I have shared. And I learned not to take that love for granted. What is here today may be gone tomorrow.

So think on this question as you read the following poem, “what would you do if you had just one more day?”

“Tomorrow Never Comes”

If I knew it would be the last time
that I’d see you fall asleep,
I would tuck you in more tightly
and pray the Lord, your soul to keep.

If I knew it would be the last time
that I see you walk out the door,
I would give you a hug and kiss
and call you back for one more.

If I knew this would be the last time
I’d hear your voice lifted up in praise,
I would video tape each action and word,
so I could play them back day after day.

If I knew it would be the last time,
I could spare an extra minute or two
to stop and say “I love you,”
instead of assuming you would KNOW I do.

If I knew it would be the last time,
I would be there to share your day,
well, I’m sure you’ll have so many more,
so I can let just this one slip away.

For surely there’s always tomorrow
to make up for an oversight,
and we always get a second chance
to make everything right.

There will always be another day
to say our “I love you’s”,
and certainly there’s another chance
to say our “Anything I can do’s?”

But just in case I might be wrong,
and today is all I get,
I’d like to say how much I love you
and I hope we never forget.

Tomorrow is not promised to anyone,
young or old alike,
and today may be the last chance
you get to hold your loved one tight.

So if tomorrow, why not do it today?
For if tomorrow never comes,
you’ll surely regret the day
that you didn’t take that extra time
for a smile, a hug, or a kiss,
and you were too busy to grant someone,
what turned out to be their one last wish.

So hold your loved ones close today,
whisper in their ear,
tell them how much you love them
and that you’ll always hold them dear.

Take time to say “I’m sorry”, “please forgive me”,
“thank you” or “it’s okay”.
And if tomorrow never comes,
you’ll have no regrets about today.

by Norma Cornett Marek
(March 10, 1940 – July 17, 2004)
Reprinted with permission.

*Written by Norma Cornett Marek in 1989 as, in her words, “a tribute to a beloved child I lost, in hopes it would cause people to never be careless or too busy to let our loved ones know we love them.” Norma Marek passed away July 18, 2004, after a prolonged battle with cancer. Before her death, she began working with singer/songwriter Ray Paquet to put her words to music. The song was completed in May 2004 and Norma got to hear it before she died. A book of her poetry & prose was published after her death: “Whispers From The Heart”.

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