By: Jamie Mason |
October 8th, 2009 was the day my whole life changed for many reasons. My stepdad, Chuck, of 27 years was shot and killed by a co-worker’s (Rosa) ex husband. Rosa was also shot and died a week later. Her ex-husband committed suicide on that evening after the police chase.
I got the call around 7:15 a.m. It was a dear friend of mine who I used to work with at the hotel. She told me about the shootings and how Chuck had lost a lot of blood. Another employee of the hotel called my sister Charli (named after her dad), and told her what happened. My mom and Chuck were granted a divorce 10 days prior to this day, so she was living with me. I told her to get ready- we needed to go somewhere. I didn’t know how I was going to tell my mom what happened, so I waited until I picked up Charli from work. My sister Becky met us at the hospital. When we got into the waiting room we called the following relatives: Jana (my sister from Utah), Aunt Mary & Aunt Cathy (Chuck’s sister’s from Indiana), Uncle Doug (Chuck’s brother from Indiana) and many others that needed notified.
After an hour or so, he was flown to Wichita, Kansas. I remember just leaving town, not even taking time to pack anything. We didn’t even think about how we would be there for a couple of days. We rented hotel rooms near the hospital and never stayed there. I’m so thankful the hotel gave us back our money. As they were escorting us to the family waiting room, a thought came into my head- I Can’t Do This Alone! I am not strong enough for my whole family. I needed a higher power that was greater than myself.
I quoted The Lord’s Prayer. That was the only prayer I knew. I had been to church (a blessing); however I didn’t have a relationship with God. I thought I had to fix myself before he would ever accept me.
The doctor came in, and Charli stood up to hear the news. There wasn’t any brain activity- Chuck’s brain was dead and there wasn’t anything they could do. My sister fell to her knees and wept, while my mother sat in the chair and wept. Saying the Lord’s Prayer and crying were the only things I knew how to do at this moment.
The hotel manager and a minister from the Salina Church came to the hospital to spend the day with us. God’s love and presence was with these two men, we hadn’t ever met before that day. The situation felt like a nightmare, however I felt God’s presence and comfort through the people around me (another blessing).
We planned a funeral- it was my first time doing something like that. We donated his organs- heart, kidneys and eyes. As we did that we learned that my mom and Chuck were never divorced. Their attorneys didn’t sign the papers! (another blessing)
The biggest thing that changed my life that day was my decision to walk with God. I now have hope and peace in my life when life gets unstable. I know that God loves me and He is holding me in His arms! Am I perfect? No. Do I have to be? No. He is enough!
He accepts me and you just as we are. When I cried out to him with my whole heart, He heard me and saved me. Day by day, I do my best to be the hands and feet of Jesus to those around me. Anytime I can spend the day with someone, I remember the time when God placed people in my life to do that for me (more blessings).
May God bless you.
From the ends of the earth I call to you,
I call as my heart grows faint; lead me to a rock that is higher than I.
Matthew 6:9-13 (as I remembered)
Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, on Earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day, our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen
Dear Heavenly Father, Lord, I thank you for loving and accepting me where I was. When I called out to you Lord, oh, you were there. You gave me strength, direction, peace, comfort and put people in my life that could love and accept me through you. You don’t only love ME like that, but you love each and every person that you created like that. Lord I am so thankful, I pray that I continue to remember that you love me through my brokenness and through the sins that I continue to make. And Lord I ask this all in Jesus’s name I pray. Amen
No matter what stage of life you are in- you aren’t ever outside God’s reach! He loves you, He created you and He wants a relationship with you! May you always know you are worthy of love- true love!
Jamie has invited you to contact her: firstname.lastname@example.org