Good morning and welcome back for another Thankful Thursday. This week is going to be a little different for me, and might be a little lengthy…
We have had a rough week with my little brother. Last weekend we were supposed to leave for Kansas to visit Dustin's family. Friday my mom called me crying saying I needed to get to the hospital. Christian started having seizures and his heart rate was up in the 180's. They called rapid response, meaning the room was FULL of doctors and nurses. Christian was not responding.
We found out the next morning that they had almost lost him, nothing they were doing was helping or stopping the seizures. It was a close call for sure.
They think it was a combination of some swelling in his brain and the toxicity of the strong antibiotic he'd been on since the shunt removal to treat the infection he had. They finally got him stable and quickly put an external drain in his head to drain and fluid creating pressure. He also had to be put on a ventilator. He is doing better now and off the ventilator. It was a step backwards, but that is ok. We know who is in charge here!
All of this really got me thinking, how do people go through stuff like this who don't have relationships with God and their faith to lean on. Which then got me thinking about the past few years and the people God has placed in my life and the path he has directed me on, how everything and everyone serve such a great purpose.
About 2 and a half years ago, my sweet friend Kristal sent me an email that forever changed my life. I even remember exactly where I was and what I was doing when I read it. She asked me about my relationship with Jesus. At first, I didn't know how to answer. I was raised going to church, but it was never a good experience, for a lot of reasons. We never had a home church or church family and it was just never pleasant. It turned me off completely. When I moved out and on my own, I just wanted no part of it. I always believed in Jesus and loved him, but had no relationship whats so ever and sure as heck didn't want to go to church. I know, sounds weird. After Kristal wrote me this email, she invited me over and we had a discussion about it all. And ate muffins :)
The rest is history. A short version-
My dear friend Jen went through a rough time with her family. This led them to move away to Edmond, OK. While there, they started going to a church, LifeChurch.tv. After moving back here, they started attending the campus that we had here in Owasso. Dustin and I then started attending. I have never fallen in love with a church before, but I love LifeChurch dearly. I look so forward to it each week. It's brought so much joy to my life, given me a relationship with Jesus that I never knew was possible and gave me new friends in our community. Our other best friends, Andrew & Angela, started attending LifeChurch soon after we did.
Kristal ended up asking me if I wanted to start having a weekly bible study. I said yes, and here we are almost 2 years later. We have grown our little LifeGroup to a group of 4 and we meet every Thursday night to talk about Jesus and how our week has been.
I was baptized in October of 2012, an awesome experience.
It's truly amazing to me to look back at just the last few years and see how everything has unfolded for us. Friends we've made and where we've been led. It's all a path that was no accident. I am 100% sure, I am exactly where I am supposed to be.
The last 4+ months have kind of been like a nightmare. Long, hard, emotional and stressful. It's not over yet, Christian still has a long way to go. I am so thankful to have strong, positive and uplifting family and friends that believe in and have the same faith in Jesus during this time. God has given us a platform and is guiding us in ways and doing things with our family that is mind blowing to us. Our family remains positive throughout everything, we trust in God. Of course, it's hard and we have our moments, we wouldn't be normal if we didn't.
My mom sat down for an interview this week. I don't know if you've ever experienced anything like this, but sitting on my couch watching my mom and seeing pics of my little brother on the 10 o'clock news was so surreal. I told myself I probably shouldn't read comments on the online stories, but I did. I let them get to me too. Then finally at the end of the day I felt peace. There are over 4,600 people following Christian's story and recovery on the Facebook page, supporting our family with words of encouragement and prayer. Way bigger than the 10 or so people who wanted to speak negative comments behind their computer screens. And seriously, they were posting about how my family was smiling in the pictures! How could we be smiling in a time like this?
Well, I can give you 3 reasons. #1, he is still alive. #2, we try to only remain positive and upbeat around him. Speaking only life into him! And #3, the specific picture the anchor used and these people were referring to, was taken at the moment Christian was set into a chair for the first time since the accident. It was about a month in. It was an exciting moment for our family! I guess if the only negative thing these people had to say was that my family was being too positive in their eyes, that's really not so bad...
If you would like to see the story, you can see it here. I think they did a good job putting the story together.
Like I said, a different post for me today but this is what is on my heart this week.
Thanks for stopping by and thanks for all your continued prayers and support. It means the world to us!