I simply do not understand…

Well, I gotta say… this weekend was such a whirlwind of emotions for me. But, first, let me get a Princess JF update in…
Last week was crazy busy with doctor’s appointments. Monday was a follow-up with her GI doctor {whom we do not have to go back to unless warranted} and then straight to another hospital for her play therapist appointment {which was moved from Thursday}. Tuesday was my massage appointment =). Wednesday’s are always hectic just trying to get everyone home, fed, and out the door to church. Thursday was another appointment with the psychiatrist. And then Friday, Princess JF and I spent all morning at Children’s Dallas for her DMSA scan. That meant registration at 9:30am, DMSA injection at 10:00am {which she did not do well with… she has regressed back to hating needles apparently}, and then an hour and a half wait until the scan.

We were able to get some quality time in as we played on the outside playgrounds there at the hospital and then had a picnic lunch. We fed some birds and simply enjoyed the amazing Spring time Texas weather. Princess JF was relatively calm and everything went well. Her scan required her to lay still for 30 minutes taped to a table while the machine moved up, down, and around taking pictures of her kidneys {we need some of this tape at home}. The doctors are checking for any damage or other abnormalities that may have been caused or could be causing her frequent UTI’s. We get the results to that test tomorrow. Praying for good results.
Finally, Saturday came. I have to admit, I was

looking forward to Caleb’s “Celebration of Life” service {if that is something to look forward to}, because I was ready to share in celebrating such an amazing young man. I had been working for three days to gather food once again for the family and things were coming together nicely by Saturday morning. I had even de-stressed enough to start doing some Spring cleaning in our closet. Anyways.. SuperDad and I had just got back with some last minute items for Caleb’s family and lunch for our kiddos. I was on the phone with one lady from our church while another was pulling up to drop off garlic bread. This is when everything took some unrealistic turn.

Let me give you a quick breakdown of our neighborhood. Almost everyone on our end of the block are quite close to each other. They have all lived here for years on end and when we first moved in we felt like the outsiders. Our East side neighbor was the first to introduce himself and give us a rundown on the neighbors. He was quite friendly and always said, “Hello.” On the West side, we have his parents.
Saturday afternoon when I walked out of my house to talk on the phone, I was drawn to some commotion to the East side house. Other neighbors had begun beating on both the front door and garage. West side Dad was hurrying over to open the garage. Mom was standing in my front yard. As Dad and the neighbors opened the garage they found a running car… and we knew immediately what had happened. Mom collapsed in my arms… screaming and wailing. I looked at the poor friend that had just stopped by to drop off bread and didn’t know what to do. As I held Mom and prayed and prayed, I saw SuperDad come running out while our children watched in horror out of the front windows. SuperDad helped Mom get back home while I stood stunned between the two houses. I simply did not understand.

“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.” ~1 Corinthians 6:19-20

The next few hours played out like some sort of movie scene. Everything seemed to move in slow motion as 2 fire trucks, an ambulance, and several police cars lined our street. It was so surreal. And the images continue to flash through my mind even still. It was never anything I expected to see played out in front of me. I am still having such a hard time dealing with the events of the day and the emotions involved. Didn’t he know his parents would be the ones to find him? What about the 14 month baby he was helping raise? Did he even think about the heartache this would cause others? Why didn’t Princess CJ and I hear the car when we walked by earlier and realize what was happening? Could we have helped him? So many questions!! I simply do not understand.
My son told me about a “game” local high school students across the lake have been playing called “Death.” Basically they hang themselves to the point of passing out and whomever gets the furthest without dying is declared a winner. Really?! Two varsity football players have died and another has come very close. As I was searching for the obituary for our neighbor for services, I noticed 3 others had hung themselves the same day as his death…. one a 14 year old girl! I simply do not understand.
I realize life is hard. I know that people can be difficult and circumstances can be unbearable. I know that life can seem to come at us all at once. I can comprehend being overwhelmed by financial strains and relationship struggles. I have walked my fair share of turmoil and tribulations. But, at no point have I been ready to simply “throw in the towel.” Life can change in the blink of an eye. We have peace and victory in a Risen God! What makes me sad is that some people still do not know that to be true. God’s grace is sufficient. I simply do not understand.
I was told just this past week by my dear friend, Richard {Caleb’s dad}, that he has two theories on stress:
  1. There are things we stress over that can be changed, so change them.
  2. There are things we stress over that we can NOT change, so it will not do us any good to stress over them anyways. No matter how bad things are, we simply have to change what we can and accept those that we can’t.
It’s truly that “easy.”

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can, And wisdom to know the difference. ~The Serenity Prayer

Life is not ours to take. Period. The most troubling thing I heard this weekend happened when we took some food to our West side neighbor’s house Saturday night. As we talked, SuperDad told them to let us know if we could do anything or if they needed support from our church family. The mom looked at us and said. “We are not very religious people.” {I wanted to tell her we weren’t religious either.} And a few moments later the dad said, “He’s in a better place.” I was sad because I knew from my Bible that without God that our East side neighbor could not be “in a better place.” This has continued to torment me. I wish I could have done more. I wish I would have had the courage to talk more about our faith, but had only shared with them that we attended church regularly and did not party. That we were believers and relied heavily on our God. But, I never asked him to come to know Christ. That makes me sad. I wish I had done more. I wish I had that chance once more. I wish he would have known Christ. I simply do not understand.
 
**If you do not know Christ, you can pray this simple prayer. Then get plugged into a local church and grow in your relationship with God. He only asks the you ask Him in, seek His face, and knock at His door. {Matthew 7:7}**
365 Days of Gratitude
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