December 19, 2014

Your Whole Life Can Change In a Terrifying Instant

May9

Clean plate club fans Meal Time Magic: the Joy of an Unexpected BlessingTaken from my post: Mealtime Magic: the Joy of an unexpected blessing.

Yesterday morning, I sat at this table writing my Tasty Tuesday post about lessons that I wanted to learn. I was speaking about tangible life skills like canning or sewing, but never could I have imagined that the Lord had other lessons He wanted me to teach me yesterday.

Painful ones about trust, faith, sovereignty, friendship, and even coming to grips in the midst of a nightmare that bad things happen to good people, and God is good regardless of the outcome.

I don’t really have the energy to wrap my words around my experience or the absolute sheer terror that we went through for four hours, but I will write about them in the future, because I had some powerful moments yesterday, and I don’t won’t those lessons wasted.

We brought Edison home from Ecuador nearly three years ago. This blessings, this gift, this child has taught us more about unexpected joy than anyone else. If you haven’t been following my blog for very long, read his story of being abandoned in a trash can and why my brother and sister in love brought him home.

You will also want to read the post I wrote live from Ecuador on the day I first met this gift nearly three years ago, The Picture Says It All. That too was a miracle moment and we’ve had so many with him. Nearly every day I see sweet Edison, since they live next store to us, and he comes to see “Tia Jen” quite often. He has been “Jesus with skin on” to many of us by shining such joy so often.

Here was my Balancing Beauty and Bedlam Facebook update yesterday.

Life can change in an instance. I had the most horrifying four hours of my life today. My special blessing nephew (Down’s Syndrome), who I had the privilege of bringing home from Ecuador and who lives right next door to me, was lost for four hours in our shared woods (miles of woods). In a split second, he followed the dogs off his deck and into the woods, got disoriented and ended up wandering miles.

Thankfully, the dogs stayed with him the whole time. After hours of searching, teams of rescue, K9 units, and an Amber Alert, we are praising the Lord for his safe return.
It could have been such a different outcome with creeks lining the property. It was a heavenly celebration and reunion.
Love on your babies tonight, sweet mamas. Life is so short and we have such a blessed gift.
Here’s a pic of his momma weeping over his safe return. (Somewhere along the journey, he ditched his shirt and vest, which is so typical of sweet Edison.)
I love that little guy like he’s my own. It’s been a long day and we now rest in the Lord’s sovereignty that we have more time with this blessing. We don’t feel worthy of that gift.

Here are just a few pictures from yesterday.

So many thanks to all the rescue workers and volunteers that came from various counties to help in the search.

Cousins and sibling storming the rescue vehicle before any of the adults even had a chance. :)

My precious sister in law just weeping over his safe return. (Edison was so embarrassed with all the attention, and typically, he loves being the center of attention.)

This was a precious moment, and one I am sure the rescue workers have not had before.  My brother took a moment before every one began leaving to gather them, thank them, share Edison’s own rescue story with them, and how their morning devotions was about the Lost Coin parable. He proclaimed the One who is Worthy, HE IS the only true rescuer.

“We will be celebrating tonight around the dinner table. Edisdon is the son who once was lost, but now has been found.”

One of the sheriffs asked me after that, “Is he a preacher?” I had to chuckle, since he just doesn’t know my family and many of us could be called “preachers.” I just responded, “No, but he sure should be one, shouldn’t he?”

After all the units had left, we gathered together as a family/friends to sing and give praise for Eddy’s safe return. Those were some joyous moments as we sang, “Praise God from whom all blessings flow.”

Safe in his father’s arms, right where he belongs.

Thanking our Heavenly Father

I followed up with a post, Between the “What If’s and If Only’s” on some of the lessons put into perspective from this.


Comments

  1. Such an amazing story of God’s grace and providence. Rejoicing with you all in Johns Creek, GA!

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  2. Hallelujah what a Savior!!!

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  3. What a special miracle. I am so excited to share with you in this joyous answer. Unfortunately, our family had to experience the unanswered miracle. And try to learn to Love God even in the unanswered miracle. I miss my Lilli Grace everyday. And I am thankful that your family does not have to endure the same. Praise be to God for Eddy’s return…

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    Jen Reply:

    Chills, as I just went and read your story. Our minds raced to exactly where your reality is, and I can’t even imagine. Over and over, my sis in law kept crying, he was JUSt here, so we know how quickly it can happen. Thank you for sharing your story and for allowing your pain to minister to others, even though I know you would much rather He have chosen someone else.

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  4. What a blessing! Tears of gratitude to God for this precious gift.

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  5. Oh, Jen! I am so glad your family is all back together again and thank you, Jesus for taking care of little Edison.

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  6. Oh Jen – there are no words.

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  7. sitting at my table crying. can only imagine that terror and fear. so happy he was found safe. ♥

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  8. I know that horrifying experience all too well! Many years ago, when my now grown children were merely 4 and 5, their best friend, our neighbor and my heart son, was missing for 5 hours on one of the coldest days that winter. Difference for us, is that we had no idea where he was. We lived in suburbia, so our minds were imagining the worst. It was horrifying. I have never experience such fear in my life before or since. Eventually, we found him. He had been “working” on a wood pile to help his Daddy and it had collapsed on him, knocking him unconscious. The police officer that I had teamed up with, and I were the ones to find him. I was so scared to look as we carefully moved the wood off of him, piece by piece. Once uncovered, we were not allowed to move him until the paramedics had a chance to check him out. It was so hard not to scoop him up and just squeeze him. He turned out to be fine. Mild concussion and some bruises, but no major injuries. But, I will never, ever forget how scary it was that day. My heart goes out to all of Edison’s loved ones who experienced those terrifying 4 hours.

    All praise to God for Edison’s safe return!!

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  9. Thank you for sharing! What a blessing!! What a wonderful reminder of the One who rescued me and still rescues me when I wander in my own way! He puts me in His arms, weeps over me, and rejoices!

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  10. Kaye Jackson Corbin says:

    As I read this I was reduced to tears. Oh my heavens at the pain your family endured. Huggs goes out to you all. A special prayer for mom and dad.

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  11. oh God bless that little angel and your family my younger brother Matthew is Autistic and has severe mental retardation he’s 18 but mentally around 3 and he used to be a wanderer! I moved for a short period of time and the whole family was at my house well he we heard a door went outside and he was gone! It was the scariest moment of my life we found him walking down the road towards home thank the Lord! SO happy for your family! Praise God! Just started crying while reading this lol! hope you all have a blessed week!

    PS-Matthew is a shirt taking off boy as well :)

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  12. My goodness, that sounds terrible. I am so glad that your precious nephew returned safely to loving arms, thank the Lord!

    I just want to say I have a special place in my heart for South America and many of the destitute and wandering children without homes. I am so glad that Edison found a loving home with your brother and sister where he can be trained up in the ways of the Lord.

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  13. It is the scariest feeling, so glad for your happy ending!

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  14. Sarah M says:

    I haven’t read through every comment, or dug too deeply into your blog to see if you have stated where you live, so excuse me if I am repeating something someone has already told you. I work for a non-profit that works with law enforcement across the country and in Canada to help bring those who wander home. Whether it’s a child with Down’s or an elderly person with Dementia, anyone with a cognitive disability who may wander off and not know how to get home. If you would like to know more, please contact me. With our program your nephew would have been located in about 20-30 minutes. I am not a sales person, so please don’t think I’m trying to pitch something, just someone who works for a great program that has helped thousands across the country. I have friends with children with special needs, and I’m also a mother.

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  15. Oh, Jen, I am so glad and happy! What an excruciatingly frightening time you all had–but what a powerful story you now have to share! Praise God!!

    My darling nephew has Down’s Syndrome; he is a such a gift from God. He brings out the best in everyone around him. :)

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  16. Lanie loves some Eddy so glad he is okay, calls for a pizza night on us!

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  17. Thank you God! What and amazing story and I am so glad he’s home safe and sound! Hugged my kids to death yesterday and they were so embarrassed but I was reminded that i need to do that every. single. hour. God bless

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  18. Oh Jen, praising God with you!

    And this same sort of thing happened to another friend of mine. He was found too!

    Such joy in the finding!

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  19. Cheryl B says:

    Jen, What a glorious reunion! Overjoyed that Eddy is back where he belongs. I have no doubt a guardian angel was with him (and the dogs) during the ordeal. Thank you for sharing this to remind all of us to hug our loved ones just a little tighter.

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  20. nancy l says:

    Jen. I thank God that His hand was upon you and your family durning a very scary time I also have a son with D.S. and autism who is a great escape artist but thankfully has not gotten to far:)
    I pray blessing upon u and your family!

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  21. Tears are just STREAMING down my cheeks. Oh, life is so sweet….Edison so sweet…family so sweet. Thankful for your story of rejoicing. Thankful for the blessed outcome. How it could have been so very different. Praising Jesus for His tender care for this amazing boy!

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  22. Praise Jesus!!! So thankful for his safe return.

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  23. Sarah H. says:

    Oh Jen, what a miracle. My sister experienced something very similar when her youngest son was little. So scary. Thank Jesus little Edison is home, and what a blessing that your family could use this experience to show Jesus to others.

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  24. Wow! Hugs to everyone who has ever been through this. So thankful it ended well.

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  25. Oh Girl, Thank God!!! No, we dont ever know when our lives are going to change.. when or how. I never let a grudge or a harsh word go on longer than a minute or two… sometimes I even just apologize for thoughts I’ve had and never spoke.. It matters!

    Im so glad your Little Edison was brought home, safe & sound in Gods Love.

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  26. Years ago, before having kids of my own, I would have been far more judgemental regarding your story. Now I TOTALLY get it!! It happens so fast, and I truly understand and empathise with your SIL saying “he was just here!” What a wonderful reunion..so glad for Edison’s safe return. To God be the glory….

    -ann

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  27. So glad he is home safe!!!

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  28. Praising the Lord with you. Edison is so loved. :)

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  29. Portia Phillips says:

    Blessed be the name of the Lord!

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  30. Oh, Jen, my worst nightmare! My son has autism and he was lost, followed the wrong pair of jeans into a store in an outlet strip mall, at about Edison’t age. Minutes feel like days. But we were separated so briefly he hadn’t noticed, thank you Jesus. He’s 26 now and could still very easily get lost and we’d be in a similar situation to yours with precious Edison. Except I don’t know how many would understand the severity of the situation with an adult, except he does have a seizure disorder and needs his medication. I’m so glad he’s back, safe and sound.

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  31. Diana B says:

    What a beautiful story! Thank you Jesus for Edison’s safe return! This brought tears to my eyes–his mom must have been terrified!

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  32. oh Jen, your story brought tears to my eyes! I’m beyond thrilled for you all that he’s now safe and sound at home with his family.

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  33. Annette Holbrook says:

    Praise God for His mercy and love. What a wonderful ending to what could have been a tragedy. And those dogs are certainly angels sent by God to protect and watch over your precious nephew. I hope they got some extra lovin’! :) I will be sure to hug my little one extra tight today… Thank you for sharing God’s work in your life.

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  34. Praise Jesus! What an amazing story.
    I have just read this weeping over that moment – you see, I have a dream of one day adopting a special blessing with downs, so this just spoke to my heart like crazy! So thankful for your happy ending!

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  35. This has me crying! I’m glad he was found, those had to of been the longest 4 hours. Sorry your family had to go through all of that but thank you for sharing and reminding me to treasure life today because it really all can change quickly.

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  36. I’m so very, very grateful that little Edison is home, safe and sound. When my, now 10 year old, was 11 months old. He opened our sliding glass door (apparently is wasn’t shut quite all the way) and walked outside and down the street. I realized it when someone rang my doorbell and when I answered the door there was an older gentleman holding my baby. We had only lived there for a couple of months and he was so very gracious. But…. I was a mess, grief stricken by what could have happened, thankful that my baby who I didn’t even know was missing was safe. That experience definitely has made me a more compassionate, humble mama. Now when I hear things like “Where was the mom?” or “What kind of mom wouldn’t know the child wasn’t in the house?” I know the answer, a mom just like me. It can happen in a blink of the eye. It also reaffirmed that God is the true protector of my children. I can’t protect them from everything. As my oldest is leaving home for college this fall I have to continue to remember that God is their ultimate protector…not me.

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  37. Oh my heart my heart my heart! What a story! What a precious Savior to save this baby twice!
    God bless you all. So thankful for a sweet ending!

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  38. this story made me cry, and then cheer, and then cry again. i am glad that he is back home wher he belongs. God is faithful!

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  39. Safe at home in loving arms!! Oh, praise God! I can’t begin to imagine what you all felt during those long hours, but I am so happy that I got to learn more about the wonderful boy! Could you give him a hug for me too, what an amazing child!

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