Today I am very thankful for my Big Brother, Jeff, and my Big Sister, Ellen. We are really wonderful friends. There are very few other people I’ve met in my entire life whose siblings have loved them the way my siblings have loved me my whole life. What a blessing God has given me by placing me in their family!

Nearly 3 months ago, I got a reminder that my siblings are a precious gift who won’t be around forever, when Ellen was hit by a semi truck. I’ll let my sister finish this post with her story and what it taught her:

It was 1:03pm on a Wednesday afternoon.  Matt was working in a hot, noisy area when he received that dreaded phone call.  “Hi, this is Hillary. You don’t know me, but I’m calling because your wife was involved in a bad accident.”  She hung up the phone and said to me, “He said he loves you and will meet you at the hospital.”  What sweet words to my ears!

I heard someone say that life flight had already been called.  I assumed it was for me, and I immediately had a talk with God.  You see, I’m already prepared for death. I accepted Christ as my Savior years ago, and I’m confident my eternity will be spent in Heaven.   My ultimate, number one desire for my children is to also know Christ as their personal Savior, yet it’s a decision I cannot make for them.  I prayed that I have influenced them to seek that relationship.  I just kept thanking God over and over that my kids were not with me.  There was a peace that came over me, something I can’t really explain.  I’m sure I was nervous on the outside, jittery, and chatty, but there was calmness on the inside.

It’s truly amazing to see how God was working with me and my family two months prior to the accident.  I wasn’t aware that He was making preparations, but in hindsight, it’s so obvious that’s exactly what He was doing.   Conversations, books, stories highlighted in the news, and scripture were all preparation for the hardship we were about to endure.

God prepared us, God spared my life…but what’s really important is how this event has changed my life and how much I want to strive to be a better person.  So I want to share a little of what I’ve learned along this journey.

First, I should not have so much stuff in my van!  I can only imagine the amount of trash the clean up crew picked up!  You should never leave your home if it looks like a bomb went off!  Not only are we in the midst of home repairs, but I had let my toys, dirty laundry, and just stuff take over my house that week. Oh my, was I ever so unprepared for this!

On a more serious note, I’ve also had lots of time to think about my current priorities and what they need to be. I’m working on eliminating two phrases out of my vocabulary, “There’s not enough time in my day.”  Fact is, God give us time to do all the things He intends for us to do.  And the other, “I’m overwhelmed.”  If I’m overwhelmed over minor things, are my children going to think when something serious happens, I can’t handle it?

I’ve thought about the many, many people that have brought me food, sent flowers and cards, visited, supported my family.  I’m certain that I do not truly comprehend the number of people that have prayed for my recovery.  It’s humbling to think of people praying when they weren’t even aware of who I was.  Prayer draws you near to God so my prayer is that someone was drawn closer to God through this experience.

A crisis draws people together.  God uses our pain and suffering to bring about His plan.  He places us so that others may see his work in our lives. The gentleman from the truck in front of me was the first one to my side to check on me.  Three ladies stood by my side until emergency personnel arrived.  They even tolerated my humor! God places people in your life for a reason, and I was so glad he placed each and every person that afternoon in my life.  I am humbled by the number of people that assisted that day.

The day of the accident, my CD player held the first disc to the audio book, Don’t Waste Your Life by John Piper.   A quote from the website Desiring God sums up this book: “God created us to live with a single passion: to joyfully display his supreme excellence in all spheres of life.  The wasted life is a life without his passion.  God calls us to pray and think and dream and plan and work, not to be made much of, but to make much of him in every part of our lives.” (You can download this book for free here.)

Through this major event in my life, I have been reminded of my passion and purpose.  I want you to know that God is good and He is good ALL the time.  God was with each one of us involved in this accident.  Why he chose to save me, I don’t exactly know yet, but I intend to find out.   I’m not going to waste the wreck.  I want to use it to joyfully display His supreme excellence.