My name is Kristie.
I grew up in a safe and peaceful home. My parents have always taught me that no matter what life throws my way, TRUST in The Lord! I’ve been married for 12 years, a mother to three little boys, but I know that my parents will still stop their entire lives for me. Even if that means they have to take off work to drive 9 hours to get to me, they will do it. Storms have always been hard on me. The thunder and lightening have always scared me. Life’s storms challenge me too. But there is comfort in the voice of my father and security in the words of my mother. Hearing my dad say, “we speak the Lord’s protection over your home in Jesus Name” brings peace to my heart every time. Reading my mom’s words in a text message: “Speaking Psalms 91 over your home right now” calms the storms of my heart when days are hard. I am thankful for the gift God has given to me in my parents.
My grandfather was a pastor. I don’t remember ever missing a church service when I was growing up. Our family faithfully served whenever the church doors were open. I loved being with my church family. I was 4 or 5 years old when I asked Jesus to be my Savior and I do remember that day well. I was in Sunday School class and my teacher Miss Miller prayed with me. Jesus has been a constant companion and I have always welcomed His presence.
I will never be able to understand why God gives beautiful gifts only to take them away from us before we are ready to let go. I was 7 years old on the day my little brother died. We only had Michael with us for 2 months. It was a terrible day, one I will never ever forget. I woke up that Saturday morning and found him in his crib – something was wrong. My parents tried CPR and called the doctor but they couldn’t revive him. I can still remember them rushing out the door with Michael, leaving me and my 3 year old sister, Stephanie, sitting on the stairs alone. Family members were on their way to our house but it was enough time for my sister to ask me some really hard questions no 7 year old should have to answer. But Jesus was there, my constant companion, and He gave me the words. I remember her face as she stared out the window and asked me if she would die too.
“In Jesus, we never die.” What an incredible blessing to be 7 years old, gifted through The Holy Spirit Himself to tell my sister about Jesus. His love. His saving power. His mercy. What a blessing to know that Jesus healed my brother that day forever. And what a treasure to know that I will see him again. I may not understand why we only had him here in our presence for 2 months. I may not understand why God doesn’t always heal these earthly bodies we have when they fall ill. But we have all we need in Jesus. Sometimes our prayers are answered but sometimes they are not answered as we hope… And if not, God is still good. No circumstance, no storm, no failure, no disappointment will ever be able to change this truth. GOD IS GOOD!
My parents never blamed God or questioned Him for my brother’s death. “It is well” became our family theme and anchor. We continued to worship and serve Him and though we miss Michael, he will never be forgotten and lost because we know he is with Jesus and we will see him again.
As a teen I spent a LOT of time growing and competing as an athlete. I ran on the cross country team and I played basketball, and softball. My time was always filled up with sports, but not so filled up that I neglected my church family and time alone with God. My heart wanted Jesus and all He had for me more than anything else. But I loved sports! I remember having to make a hard choice the summer after I made the Jr. Varsity basketball team. That summer I could attend basketball camp with my new JV teammates. But church camp was the very same week. I REALLY wanted to go to church camp because I knew all my friends were going. I had not missed a year since second grade, the same year Michael died. God faithfully met me at camp every summer. So, I had to tell my coach that I chose to attend church camp instead of basketball camp. I obeyed. I gave up something that seemed so very important at the time, but as time has passed, I understand why. My coach accepted my choice but when I returned home from church camp, I was no longer on the Jr. Varsity team. My choice to go to church camp affected, not only what was going on in my life right then – my heart for basketball – but what I didn’t realize at the time was that it also played a huge role in God’s plan for my future – my husband. When I was 20 years old I decided to return to that same camp as a counselor. God’s plan for me that week would change the course of my life forever. That week I began dating my husband and a year later, we married at that very same camp ground. Sometimes the things we think are important now are actually not important at all. Not that those things are insignificant, God cares about every single detail of our lives. And so He requires we put all those details in His hands where He alone can shape them into the image of His Son – so the world will see HIM when they look at us. Sometimes it feels like we are giving up our entire heart, when in reality He is ensuring we never lose it. One day I will understand. So will you.
As the Bride of Christ I have a constant eternal companion in Christ. He takes care of me… I know that no matter the situation, be it a little bump in the road or a violent life storm, His huge outstretched arms protect me– under them I am perfectly safe.
My anchor verses:
Proverbs 3:5 Trust in The Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.
Psalm 71:5 For you are my hope O Lord God, You are my confidence since my childhood.
Psalm 91…. He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty…