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May Seventeenth

May 17, 2013

Yesterday was Tea & Testimony at MOPS, and this post is essentially a recap of my own personal Testimony during the meeting. (Only with slightly more coherency and slightly less crying.) My first Tea & Testimony was my Big Kid’s first birthday. Today, May 17, 2013, my Big Kid turns seven. Given that I’m a softie and a crier at heart, I’m also a sentimentalist who loves milestone events as a time of personal reflection.

Big Kid & Momma celebrating his Sixth birthday at school.

Big Kid & Momma celebrating his Sixth birthday at school.

Last year, T&T fell on my Big Kid’s sixth birthday. As is typical, I spoke about how much my life had changed since that day my son was born, and how important a role MOPS has played in that. What I did not know, at that time, so filled with Joy, is that by the end of the day, God would take my dad.

My dad died one year ago today, May 17th, on my son’s sixth birthday. As the day went on, after MOPS, I got dad’s text at 12:30 saying “Happy Birthday to Sean!!” and his Facebook message at 1:24 p.m. saying “Happy Birthday, Dude!” I remember remarking to my husband that it was odd we had not heard from Dad about joining us for dinner as we drove to Planet Fun at 5:30.

I did not know was that he was already gone. My dad died at the age of 58 of a massive heart attack sometime between 3:30 and 5:30 p.m., while working out on an exercise bike at his work. He was gone before he hit the floor.

To this day, I take solace in that fact. I knew that my dad was a very broken man, but in the past year, I have learned just how truly hurt and harmed he was as a child to have become so broken. There was little relationship with God or Jesus Christ in my dad’s life. His was a life unfulfilled, he never pursued what was truly in his heart. He was too filled with fear and anger, and I am so grateful that he did not have a moment to reflect on that mountain of regret as his life ended.

Anyone close to me knows that in the months before my dad’s death, I began a health transformation. I had no idea how my dad dying would affect that journey. My dad’s life and subsequent early death taught me that I do not want a life of regret, and none of us knows which day will be our last.  And so today, I find myself at a place in my life that I could never have imagined. It has not been a smooth road; in fact, it has been horribly tumultuous, at times very lonely, and filled with criticism.  I have fallen on my face, I have unintentionally hurt others, and I have struggled.

My favorite verse of the Bible, long before this past year, long before May Seventeenth, is Proverbs 3:5-6.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
And lean not on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him
And he will lead your paths straight.

Because of MOPS, I developed a relationship and a trust with God and Jesus Christ that I had never had in my life. Rather than take on the world’s worries, I am learning to lean on God. I almost never remember until I am already in the thick of things to do that, but that moment when I finally relinquish control and “Give it up to God,” everything gets better. Every. Single. Time. The specific situation may not actually improve, but how I view it and how I handle it does. That is God’s work for all of us.

God wants wonderful things for you, He does not want you to live a life of regret. We are His children and He dares us to dream big and go after what we want out of this life He has given us. These are not just words; more times than I can count this year, I have seen doors open that were not just closed doors to me, they were doors that I did not even know were there. Each door seems to take me further on this path, a path that I had always been too afraid to follow. I have felt my Dad here with me, encouraging me on this new path, as if to say, “Use my life as a lesson. Go after those dreams!”

If you can visualize, then, how this past year – May Seventeenth to May Seventeenth – has been:

There is this force in front of me, my dad and his life, his angel in my ear saying that an amazing life is available to me if I just allow it.
And then there is this force cradling me from behind, God telling me that I do not have to know how it is going to come together, but He has my back. Trust in Him.

Dad’s life pulling me into something Great.
And God’s love supporting me as I go there.

We all have that in us right now. Every single one of us. Yours is a life of greatness and whatever you dare to dream, you must have the faith in God that He will guide you in that direction. There has never been a better day than today to start living the life that you want. This time will pass whether you do it or not. Believe it in your heart. You do not have to know how it is going to happen. Let God worry about that.

Love and HUGS to each and everyone of you today!

May 17, 2006

May 17, 2006 – Life-Changing Day

Amy first name only signature

2 Comments leave one →
  1. May 17, 2013 12:32 pm

    Been thinking about you all day. Thank you for sharing your journey. {hugs}

    • July 3, 2013 10:44 am

      I never stopped by to tell you…Thank You. I know you know. Big HUGS and love to you always.

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