As I look back over the last year, and especially the last few weeks, I can see God's hands so clearly in our situation.
--My dad started going to church. After he had seizures in August of 2008, he started attending church with my mom in Keysville. When Kim and I talked about him, she said that sometimes she would just look at him and think "What a miracle that he is here." Truly it was.
--My mom had knee surgery in July. I was torn between going down and staying here. Summer had been hard, and Dad was not always very pleasant since he was hurting so much. He had a hard time when Mom had surgery in March though, and ultimately, God changed my heart and I went. I got to spend time with him just 3 weeks before he died. We had some good conversations and it was good. I'm so thankful that I listened to God and went.
--When Chris called me and told me that I needed to come home, I was about to meet up with my prayer partner of 10 years. We talked while I headed home to God-only-knows what disaster. She was the first person I called after Chris shared the news with me about my dad. She told me that all week God had put my dad on her heart, and that she had been praying for his salvation all week. When I finally got to my parents' house, Mom told me that she and Dad had a conversation about salvation the night before and he told her that he knew he was saved because he had asked Christ into his heart. That is a gift from God!
--At the service for my dad, the pastor chose to read Psalm 139, the Psalm I had memorized several years ago when I struggled with anxiety, panic and pain. How precious that God would remind me of those things then.
--The sermon on my first Sunday back was on God's grace. I had had my doubts about my dad's relationship with Christ, but our pastor and the Lord reminded me from the Word that God's love and grace to us is unconditional, not based on our performance but on God's faithfulness.
--I was able to pray with my family for the first time ever, and to share God's Words of peace and comfort with them in many different ways.
I'm sure there are many many more evidences of God's faithfulness throughout this trauma like the church people who brought food and baggies and paper products through the weekend, my friends here who have taken care of us since our return, and God's sustaining hand to help us walk through each day. He is truly so faithful. The scripture that He has been bringing up to me since about May is Isaiah 43:1-2. It worried me for a while. I'd ask why I needed to hear that.
"...Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
When you pass through the waters I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.
For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel....."
How grateful I am for those words!