Sunday, January 16, 2011

How Can I Say Thanks?

"I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers..."
Philemon 1:4

The last two weeks have been indescribable. 
And it may take me a while to unpack and process it all. 
And it may not make sense for a while.
But I have to begin with "Thank you!"

Monday, January 3rd, I received a phone call from my sister in Texas. That's where I am from...where all my family lives. I was standing in my kitchen slicing up steak to stir fry for dinner. Wasn't expecting to hear from her...was a little surprised, actually. But nothing prepared me for what I was to hear.....

My mother and her sister, my aunt, had just been in a horrible car accident. The details of which were horrendous....sometimes you just don't need to know the details. My aunt passed away shortly after arriving at the hospital. My mother was in critical condition. Both of them had signed DNR's (Do Not Recusitate).

Nothing prepares you for such a phone call.....

They live in a small town in Texas. The hospital there could do nothing for Momma, but they could put her on a respirator and send her to Parkland Hospital in Dallas, about 90 minutes away, in hopes the bigger trauma hospital could save her. The decision was made to do so. Late that night, I received another didn't look good. The doctors told my three sisters that there was too much damage; but they could leave her on the respirator until I arrived....

I can't begin to describe the feelings...
not sure I can even define them yet...
maybe I never will. 

My husband couldn't get off work, but my two oldest boys went with me. The days that followed were filled with horror, pain, sorrow, tears....lots and lots of tears...and grace. 

So much grace!!

The Presence of the Lord was with us every moment of every day; with every decision that had to be made; with every step that we had to take. And to those of you who were aware of this situation and prayed for us and encouraged us and loved on us, I can only say.....
Thank You!!!

As I process all of this and share, you will understand how and why I needed you so much. But for now, just know that every time I said to God, "I can't do this anymore...I can't take anymore...I am done", I would get a text message, a facebook message or an email from one of you. And it would remind me that prayers were going up on our behalf and He was surrounding us all with His love and His strength. I am 50 years old, and I can honestly say I have never in all my life felt so much love bestowed upon me. It has blessed me beyond measure. 

As the days come, I will be able to articulate the ways I knew your prayers and felt His presence. During this extreme time of sorrow, I saw His hand move and knew His love for me in life-changing ways.

We honored my mother, Marjorie Rae Fite Brown and my aunt, Josephine Fite Newton in a double service on Saturday, January 8, 2011. My sisters and I sang "In the Presence of Jehovah" as we laid flowers on their caskets...for that is truly where they are now. 
Momma                                       Aunt Jo
Your continued prayers for our family are greatly appreciated. "To be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord" (2 Corinthians 5:8) and that is where my dear mother and sweet aunt are today....but we miss them!

Love you with all my heart!!!


Lissa said...

I didn't know that story was about you! Rita shared it last week but didn't say who it was. I would've hugged you this morning instead of waving from afar.

I love you very much.

so sorry for your loss.

Karen said...

Lena, how awesome your words during this time points to God! I am truly blessed to be able to pray for you and family. Thanking for being so real and a true example of a child of God!

Love and prayers,
Karen Petruska

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful message and testimony of God's love for each one of us. As I read this through tears I am reminded of how blessed you have been to have such a wonderful family. I love you much,

Lindsay said...

as my mom told me the news I immediately began praying. I remember meeting your mom as a young child and her sweet soft spirit. I will continue to lift you all up in prayer as God heals your heart.