The Accident happened about 11:45 on Monday night, August 12, 2013. Because of the remote location the justice of the peace did not pronounce them dead until 12:30 am, August 13, 2013. We learned of our son's death the next morning.
The Accident four years ago changed me. It changed our family in many ways.
The truth is most of the changes in me have been positive. I'll never be glad my son died, but I'm grateful for many things that came out of his death.
I've learned that I can choose to dwell on what I've lost and stop living. Or I can choose to be grateful for what I still have.
I now understand more what it means to cling to God in trials. And as I go through this trial, the testing of my faith is developing perseverance in me. And through perseverance, God is making me mature and complete.
I've learned to write. I started a blog and became a writer. Something I never dreamed of doing before. I wrote a book, which led to a second book…which led to a Bible study.
I have a stronger desire to understand scripture. I spend time almost daily in God's Word learning more about who He is and what my response to Him must be.
I am more patient with others in pain. I'm not so quick to judge.
I am not caught up in the annoying details of life. Life is too precious to waste on being annoyed.
I am less easily offended.
I learned to forgive small and even huge offenses. I had to forgive the driver; I would have gone insane if I hadn't. Choosing forgiveness helped me learn to walk out forgiveness.
I've met amazing people who walk this road with grace and faith, parents who've lost their child yet continue to live well.
I've learned to listen to others, to folks who aren't like me but have wisdom to share because they've walked through fire.
I'm more in love with my husband than I thought possible. He has loved me well and helped me walk this journey with joy.
I cherish life because I know it can be snuffed out in a moment yet I look forward to seeing heaven some day.
Yes, after four years I still have days of sorrow. I also have lots of joy.
Sorrow and joy do coexist in the hearts of believing parents who've lost children. We miss our kids while here below, but set our minds and hope on things above.
As we set our minds on things above, God conforms us to the image of His Son. This confirmation process is often painful. Dying to myself is hard. But it is so very worth the pain and effort.
Some day I will join my son in heaven, worshipping before the throne of God. What a glorious day that will be!
Until then, I have good works to do. Works God prepared in advance for me to do.
I'm grateful I got to be Andrew's mom. And I'm grateful for what God has done in me since my son's death.