Thursday, April 2, 2009


I missed some birthdays during the month of March. Well, I didn't really miss them, I just didn't share how much those "March birthday folks" have meant to me. Trust me, the not sharing has more to do with my time management skills than it has to do with how special these people are to me.

Gifts are usually for those with the birthdays. But here are a few of the gifts my loved ones, who celebrated birthdays last month, have given to me.

The first March birthday we celebrated was Jim's. I would say the greatest gift Jim has given me has been the love he has for our boys. I might not would have said that five years ago. But, as I watch Jim be Ethan's primary care giver and the time and energy that it requires, I'm amazed. He just keeps doing and giving. Such an example of the Father's love.

And I know, and Seth knows, he would do the same for him. I love the way Jim's face lights up when he talks about Seth. I love it when Jim walks back to the bedroom and in a few minutes I hear him talking to Seth on the phone. He loves to just hear his voice. He's so proud of Seth and whom he has become.

When Ethan was unconscious all those months, I never saw Jim's Bible when it wasn't opened to Mark, chapter 8. The passage tells about a father who came to Jesus and asked him to heal his son. Jesus told him that all things were possible to him who believes and the father cried out, "Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief." Jim wasn't afraid to ask. And, he wasn't afraid to believe.

The next birthdays celebrated were for my sister Debbie and my Aunt Sarah. They share the same special day.

Debbie appointed herself my NUMBER ONE protector, defender, encourager and head cheerleader a loooooooooooooooooooooong time ago. And she has never given up the job!

Aunt Sarah has given me hundreds of gifts. But probably my most favorite was one she gave me when Ethan was in the hospital. It was the gift of faith. Aunt Sarah, and my Aunt Mary Lois, would come to the hospital almost every day. Those were very dark days. Weeks and weeks went by with no change in Ethan's condition. The doctors told us that one of two things would happen. They said Ethan would either live in a vegetative state or he would pass away.

One day Aunt Sarah shared with me what had happened during her quiet time with the Lord that morning. She said she was praying that God would do something in our situation. That God would do something in Ethan's body. She said as she prayed she found herself begging for God to do something. Aunt Sarah then told me that soon she heard God say, "Sarah, be quiet. I have all that under control." Because I knew Aunt Sarah and knew her relationship with God, I too believed . . . that He did have it under control. Even if I couldn't see it at the time.

And you know what? Even today, years later, there are times when I have to go back and remember, "God told Aunt Sarah He has this under control. He must. He told her He does."

Another aunt of mine, Shelby, celebrated a birthday in March. The gift Shelby has given me, especially over the last few years, has been the example of a mother's persistent and unconditional love. To see the relentless, sacrificial love I've seen Shelby give . . . has touched my heart in ways I can't express. And, I know it touches and blesses the heart of God.

Well, those are the gifts I've been given by these people born in the month of March.

Aren't I blessed?

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