And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in Him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God's possession—to the praise of His glory.
Ephesians 1:13-14

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

My Rarely Mentioned Miracle

Tonight I was preparing to get in the bathtub when my husband thought he would be funny by banging violently on the bathroom wall to startle me. I hate being scared, and he knows that, which is what I think makes scaring me so much fun for him. Well tonight when I heard that banging sound, it was like an instant flashback to a sound that I had heard before and one that I don't like thinking about.

When we evacuated 3 1/2 years ago for Hurricane Rita, we went to my brother-in-law's house in Fort Worth. Lance was packing up the car to come back home, and he had a gun in his hand that he had brought with us for the trip up there. We had all recently seen the terrible things that had happened in New Orleans, and since he has a concealed hand gun license, it made sense that he would keep one with him on the road to protect his family if, God forbid, the need arose. However, as he carried the gun to put it back in the vehicle for the ride home, the leather band on the holster holding the gun in place broke and the gun came violently down on the hard tile of Laurie and Micah's front foyer. When the gun hit the ground, it dischared a bullet, which shot into Lance's leg. The gun was a 357 Magnum, and Lance was standing at point blank range. Micah was holding Mackenzie in his arms about 4 feet from where Lance was standing.

I was outside at the time of impact loading some other things in the car, but I heard the very loud bang. I was not sure what it was, but it sent me running for the house. My baby was inside! When I opened the front door, it was smoky, it smelled like gun powder and my husband was on the ground. I panicked. Micah told me to get towels and even though we had been staying there for over three weeks, I could not think of where the towels were. Micah called 911. I went to the bathroom and threw up. Its not that I was grossed out by blood or anything because there really was not much of it. I was just literally sick with anxiety and upset. Lance was concious and telling me everything was OK, but he was sweating alot and was very white in color.

The paramedics got there, and the first thing that they commented on was that there was no exit wound, which was a very good thing because the hole that a bullet creates in entry is much smaller than the hole created from an exit wound. The police also got there and since it was a gun shot wound they had to question us about what had happened. They made Micah and I go into separate rooms to tell the story of what happened to make sure that our stories matched up. Of course this totally tramautized an already freaking out wife. After the cops confirmed there was no foul play, they helped me into the ambulance and I rode with Lance to the county hospital while Micah followed behind in my car with Mackenzie.

When we arrived at the trauma emergency room of Fort Worth's county hospital, we had to make our way through the chain gang of prisoners who were being treated there. When I saw what the hospital was like, I sent Micah and Mackenzie back home because I realized it was no place for my six week old baby! So there I was left with a wounded husband in a very threatening, scary place. But God was with me! They took Lance in for an arteriorgram and UNBELIEVABLY, the bullet entered two millimeters away from his main artery. No permanent damage. After several long hours of monitoring him in the emergency room, we were sent home that night.

The reason that I don't like talking about this is because it was very traumatic for me. Not only was my husband hurt, but my baby was just steps away from the bullet, not to mention Lance was TWO MILLIMETERS from death himself. The "what ifs" haunted me for a long time. And the time following his wound was difficult because I had to take care of him and a new baby, as well as return to work. We had a lot of family help, but it was still a very tough time for me.

But tonight as I was sent flashing back to that scary day, I really saw the miracle of the situation and I felt like rarely mentioning it was really not bringing glory to God who so deserves it. He protected my family. I have no doubt His hands guided that bullet right through Lance's leg so no permanent damage was done then He stopped it so that Lance would not bleed out from an exit wound. Then He gave us the strength to cope with the recovery. God does work miracles. I know He does it everyday, and I want you to know that He worked a miracle for my family that day. Thank you God for the miracle of my salvation and thank you for working miracles in my life and the lives of others.

Monday, February 9, 2009

NuNu Went to Heaven Today

Well, I know a lot of you have heard that Lance's grandmother, NuNu as most know her, died today. She and I were very close, and I feel blessed to have some special memories. For the first five years we were married, Lance and I lived in a little house behind hers. We did not have a washer and dryer so I did all of my clothes at her house. In 2002, she had an anurism in her heart, and she has not been in great health since then. Brenda took good care of NuNu until she went to be with Jesus and since that time the family has all worked together to meet NuNu's needs. She also had a really special lady named Maria who came and ran errands with her. NuNu loved to be on the go, and really nothing, even the anurism could slow her down.

NuNu dearly loved Mackenzie and Mack loved her too. I am OK with everything about her passing because I have memories to cherish and I know she did not suffer, but I am a little concerned about my precious three-year old and how she is going to process this. We have experienced loss before, but this is the first time Mackenzie has been old enough to understand what is going on and really feel the loss. We told her that NuNu went to be with Jesus and that she was going to see Gammy (Brenda), and she seemed to understand, yet at the same time, she asks questions like, "When is NuNu coming home?" I am praying that Lance and I can use this experience as a teaching opportunity to show her the saving, eternal power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Yesterday was a great day for NuNu, and that is how I want to remember her. She moved her letter of membership to Hillcrest yesterday and then I fixed a hot dog lunch. She loved the chili I made for the hot dogs so much, and she looked so pretty all dressed up for church. And she was happy and smiling. As I sit here I can only imagine how magnified that happiness became today when she was able to worship Jesus in her eternal home with Him.

Thank you, Jesus, for NuNu, and thank you that you love us and desire us so much that you died a terrible death so that we could live a redeemed life forever with you and all those that love you.