There has been something on my heart that I want to share with you my sweet readers.
I share this, knowing that I have short comings in it, as a reminder to both me and you. Please know that names have been changed, to protect privacy, and I must omit certain parts to do confidentiality, but know that this story is real. It happened, and my feelings about it are still raw.
Two-ish years ago, my husband and I started a small life group (small group/community group though our church where we would meet once a week and talk about the sermon from Sunday and encourage each other). We had two other couples who were regular attenders and a few single moms. We met at our apartment, until we added another couple. The wife was in a wheel chair, and had extremely limited mobility. We will call her Nancy. Nancy had a birth defect and had been wheel chair bound since she was young, and only had limited use of her hands/arms. Her husband Logan (as we are calling him) was her sole caregiver. The had been blessed with a miracle child, lets call him Kale. Kale was in Kindergarten at the time and had the biggest smile and always gave big hugs.
Due to their situation they completely lived off of her state disability income.
I really wish I could share this part of the story with you, but I can't. All I can say, is they were placed in a bad situation. We didn't hear from them for a month, they were too embarrassed by the situation to tell anyone. We we did hear back from them, they requested we move life group to their home as their car had broken down (again) and due to her being chair bound, they had a difficult time getting around. We moved our life group to their home and met for the rest of the session. Towards the end they shared that they were being forced to move because of the situation above. The only place they could find that they could afford was in another town about a 20 minute drive. They moved, they stopped coming to church as much, their phones got shut off, we lost contact. I saw them two other times since then, they came by the church to pick up groceries or go to a service. I tried to call Nancy, but her phone was disconnected.
Fast forward to this past Easter.
The day after Easter, (remember I'm a Children's Pastor, Easter is a big crazy deal with lots of extra hours) we were told that Logan was dead. The next day I got more information, he had committed suicide right before Easter, Kale had been told that he died in a plane crash and there was no money for a funeral or burial. Logan's mom had apparently passed away and he was really struggling with her death. One of Nancy's friends had been helping out, but he too was wheelchair bound. Kale is in 1st grade, and his mom can't do much for him. They showed up at church on a Sunday in April. I got to talk with Nancy a bit, we exchanged new numbers, and Kale gave me the BIGEST hug. He was still smiling and as sweet as ever.
I called, left a message. Never heard back.
Life got busy. I got a promotion at work and all of my focus went into planing for the upcoming programing, staffing etc. Life is always busy.
This past Monday, I was in a prayer meeting and our Office Manager came and handed me a flyer.
Nancy had died last week. They were looking for donations for her services. Her sister wrote her name and number on the flyer. It was taped to our front office door (during the summer months the staff use the back door because we all park under the shade in the back, so I hadn't seen it).
My heart broke in a million pieces. Nancy, no matter what her situation had overcome so many monumental hurtles. Always with a smile, even when she was frustrated, even when they were struggling. Kale was the pride and joy of her life, her miracle baby.
My heart sunk and broke again. Kale.
Where was Kale in this mess? All I could think about was giving him a big hug, and telling him that it would be OK.
I let our Lead Pastor know and he wanted to make the call, as he had the power to financially help. Nancy's aunt and uncle are working to get their home cleared so they can adopt Kale. Kale is currently in child protective services.
We haven't heard back as to whether his Aunt and Uncle were able to get approved or not.
I can't imagine being a 7 year old, who has now lost both of his parents with in 5 months and now is in an unfamiliar home with strangers.
I am in tears still as I write this, and as I have prayed daily for Kade, and his family, God is using this situation to remind and teach me a few things that I wish to pass on to you.
We can always to more to help others. If we are to error in our interactions with others, error on the side of doing to much to help and encourage them.
I have always had a heart for adoption, and we have been planning on fostering to adopt down the road. This solidified any doubts I had about us doing this. How many other kids are out there in situations like Kale who need a loving home, even if just to land in briefly and how many more need permanent homes?
In order to peruse the goal of fostering/adopting seriously, we have several goals that need to be met that honestly, we haven't really been working on. In some area's we have actually moved backwards on due to situations we have ended up in. I am going to start actually setting and working on some of these goals.
Life can be gone in a blink of an eye. Show love to all you meet. Share your heart with them, leave it all out there. Sure, you may get hurt but you will also make a bigger impact in the lives of those around you.
Take time today, to reach out and show others some love!
This is where my head and heart have been this week, sorry if I seemed absent.