The house is quiet now, and my coffee and keyboard are calling! I've got a few new books to finish, along with an article to complete - but I thought I'd first sip my coffee and share a few thoughts about an important anniversary this morning.
We are enjoying a blessed holiday season here, with family and friends, kids home from college, and plenty of love and laughter. Last night, when everyone else was sleeping and I could not stop thinking, I remembered a holiday season ten years ago, when the kids were so much younger, and we were only 3 years into our homeschool adventure. It was a holiday season that would change our world and our family forever.
We spent the week between Christmas and New Years traveling to the Great Smoky Mountains in search of snow for our very Floridian children to see -- a new experience for them. While we were traveling, my husband and I talked about many things, including just how long we would homeschool - through 6th grade, or high school? Our perspective was one of getting the job done and moving on -- we had a lot to learn.
On December 29th, a drunk driver changed our perspective forever, and I must admit that the lessons that we learned from the awful accident that he caused changed all of us, and it changed our hearts in the best way possible. Yes, there were physical injuries that will not improve this side of heaven, but the changes in our faith and family have been astounding.
There on the side of the mountain, a miracle occurred and we were spared - and I will share it with you one of these days. I have written about it in my new book, and it still brings me to tears of thanksgiving and praise. Let me just say that when the EMTs first arrived they were getting out body bags – they didn’t think that anyone had survived!
That night and in the long nights of surgeries and recovery, we learned many lessons. We learned, first and foremost, that when God says He will never leave you or forsake you, He means it. We also learned that life is not a checklist or a dress rehearsal – it is a one-time gift from God, intended to be used wisely, as He wills it.
Homeschooling had been an item on our checklist before the accident. After the accident, we realized that homeschooling was an opportunity to share with the children – our faith, our love, life’s lessons and the importance of family relationships. I realized that while we had been busy looking to the finish line, we had been stumbling over individual needs and so much more.
Take each day and thank God for it before your feet even hit the ground in the morning. That part about life being as a vapor – gone in an instant – it is true – I’ve lived it firsthand. There are no guarantees about how much time you will have with your children – it is in God’s hands, trust me on this – been there done that. Carpe diem!
When it gets right down to it, what is THE most important thing that you can teach your children? Teach them about Jesus and the gift of His life for their salvation. Someone once said that you can’t take anything to heaven, except your family and friends!
While we won’t have a cake or party for this anniversary, we will give thanks for what we have learned and the eternity that we have all gained – priceless gifts from above.