One year ago, Good Friday fell on April 18th, the anniversary of the accident and the anniversary of the day I died emotionally to my dreams and hopes. When my wife and son were tragically taken to Heaven after our car collision, I went into my darkest hours, days, and months. I wanted to be gone with my family instead of facing the life I had left to live.
As I wrestled with my emotional death and my pain, I also wrestled with my theology. I knew that God is good, that He is omnipotent and could have kept us from this accident. I also knew that, for Christians, death is not an issue because we are citizens of another world. Yet, even as I knew all that was true, I was still in so much pain and had so many questions.
I relived my death that day, on April 18th, 2014, but only two days later, on Easter Sunday in Orlando, Florida, I was challenged to celebrate life. In my home church that day, Pastor Rob challenged us to hope and to live in hope. If the disciples rejoiced with the resurrection of Christ, who am I to wallow in the pain and hopelessness that death brings? That was the beginning, a key turning point in my journey toward healing and fully living again. I decided to personally incorporate the message of hope into my daily life.
One year later, I am married to Nancy, a beautiful, inside and out, and godly woman. I am father to three great kids. I have new dreams. I am gradually stepping back into preaching, teaching, and leading my new family. During my (very little) free time I am back into biking and running. So much good, so much hope, so much joy has filled my heart again.
No longer will April 18th be a date on the calendar that digs me into the past and into paralysis, guilt, and pain, but a day that drives me forward into resurrected living.
I believe that thousands of prayers have reached the throne of God. I am on a new path. I am still on this journey and the process is ongoing, but I am strengthened and transformed by the power of God. I did not choose this path, but it’s the one that I am called to live.
Three years after the accident, I am smiling, hoping, and embracing life again. I would have never thought this to be possible after so much pain. Thank you, my friend, for being a part of my process of restoration. Thank you, God, for your presence.