Today we are in the 4th week of Lent, and we are going to be thinking about Power through change. Change is happening all around us all the time; but we don’t always like change
Well I want to tell you a short story,
The Power to Change / Power through change
We’ve already thought about change through the life of the butterfly in the story of The Hungry Caterpillar, read to the younger ones, now we’re going to listen to a song I have heard a song by Coldplay called
Sometimes we know we need to change or move on from where we are, but we are perhaps too scared anxious about what that change will involve. Sometimes change happens whether we want it to or not. What is the biggest change you have encountered, how have you managed it?
- Was it a baby coming into the family,
- Perhaps, moving home to a different area
- Health problems or even facing a death.
- Retirement or Reduncancy
For me, the biggest change happened on a beautiful sunny afternoon, and it came not out of choice. My husband Colin and I were enjoying some time together as he was recovering after a spell in hospital. It had been a difficult time but things were improving now.
It was just before 5.30 and the phone rang, there was such an urgency in the young man’s voice “ Andy’s had an accident come quick we’re on the Perimeter Rd!” Thats all that was said, I knew it was bad.
A friend and I met to pray regularly, for our families and friends and all sorts of things, so I quickly phoned her and asked her to pray for Andrew and us, while Colin was finding the car keys etc.
It was only took a few minutes to get to the scene of the accident, as we turned onto the Perimeter Rd, we could see about 300yds up on the right was a police car with it’s flashing lights, and a couple of cars pulled off the road. We could also see some people gathered round, then a brief glimpse of our eldest sons body lying lifeless in the gutter. I knew it was serious, paramedics and an ambulance had arrived and still nothing seemed to be happening, Then the Air ambulance arrived and at about 7 pm Andrew was airlifted to Selly Oak Hospital. We hadn’t been allowed near him, we’d been ushered into a police car, and had seemingly endless questions being asked us.
On entering A/E it was like walking in on a scene from Casualty, after explaining who we were and then ushered into a side room, being told someone would come and speak to us shortly. Every now and again, someone would come to try to reassure us. Eventually, nearly 7 hours from the time of his accident we were told he was being taken to the Critical Care Unit, we could follow and just see him briefly.
He lay there motionless, his head swathed in bandages, his body so still, and draped in a crisp white sheet. His eyes were closed and wires and leads connected him to the monitors and machines that surrounded him. We tiptoed over to his bedside in silence and just stared, stunned by what we saw. We only stayed by his side for a few minutes and then drove home.
That was the beginning of a very long and difficult journey, that not only changed Andrew’s life but that of the whole family.
Andrew was in a sleeping coma for 4 and a half weeks, his jaw was broken in 3 places and he had a very serious brain injury, a week after the accident his jaw was wired together, but as for the brain injury only time would tell how it was going to affect him.
We were aware of the power of prayer, we knew so many people praying for us all, A week into the coma, his body went into spasticity, but a neurophysio who was at a nearby hospital was doing research into using Botox vaccine with brain injured patients asked if Andrew could be included in that program, I believe that was an answer to prayer, many who have spasticity after a brain injury never walk again because of deformed feet and limbs.
Eventually, after 9 years of various rehabilitation units, Andrew moved into his own flat in Earl shilton just 10 mins away from us with 24/7 care.
God has used Andrews accident to open my eyes to so many things, no, of course we would never have dreamed something like this would happen to us, but it did, and I was enabled to draw on all kinds of resources from the past, I had done nursing when I was young, I had also worked with special needs children, which gave me further insight into Andrew’s condition and I had worked with physio’s and occupational therapists as assistants. There was a lot I didn’t know, but God used all these things during Andrews recovery, with God, nothing gets wasted.
I witnessed amazing answers to prayer, one such time was after his peg feed had gone wrong, He was at his lowest ebb, and we almost lost him for the 2nd time. Peter Hancock, the Minister of Burbage Methodist Church at the time knew us as a family well, and so we asked him to go and pray over Andrew, Peter and another family friend Hilary went over and prayed with him and for him.There was no miraculous healing that was evident, but I believe God’s spirit was at work in him, slowly healing his body.
In some ways, Andrew is still very much the person we knew from before his accident, impetuous and full of life, but now he is also a very loving, caring person, considering others, loving others. He works in the headway shop in Hinckley, and he shows love and care to the folk that go into the shop, making many friends and acquaintances.
The 9th August took me personally on a journey I would never have believed I could have coped with, but I did but only with God’s help and strength on a hour by hour and day by day basis. He encouraged me, strengthened me, gave me more faith than I could dream of to get through those very difficult times. I knew God in heart ache and anguish, but He showed me the beauty of his sustaining love and power.
At the beginning, I asked what change you had faced, the ultimate change is death; we didn’t have to face that with Andrew, but even in death, God knows all the pain and the anguish and sorrow we experience.
Next week we will be remembering Jesus’, triumphal entry into Jerusalem, followed by His cruel and barbaric death on the cross, that is how God knows and understands. Jesus was God’s only son,
Philippians 2:6-11 says The Voice (VOICE)
Though He was in the form of God,
He chose not to cling to equality with God;
But He poured Himself out to fill a vessel
brand new; a servant in form and a man
indeed.The very likeness of humanity,
He humbled Himself, obedient to death a merciless death on the cross!
So God raised Him up to the highest place
and gave Him the name above all.
So when His name is called, every knee
will bow, in heaven, on earth, and below.
And every tongue will confess “Jesus, the Anointed One, is Lord,”
to the glory of God our Father!
God gave Him to our world, to humanity, He endured homelessness, sleep deprivation, being hounded by crowds, many of whom were people wanting healing, He was verbally attacked by the temple officials , the Pharisees’ and Scribes but He was patient, kind, compassionate and loving, always giving of Himself, totally selfless. All this so that we could have a deep friendship, relationship with God the Father. We know that God raised Him up, triumphant over death, so there is nothing left to fear Through Jesus selfless act we have the opportunity to change our lives, to follow His example, to humble ourselves and be servants to those around us.
In 2 Corinthians 5:15-21 it says
2 Corinthians 5:15-19 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
And Christ did die for all of us. He died so we would no longer live for ourselves, but for the one who died and was raised to life for us. We are careful not to judge people by what they seem to be, though we once judged Christ in that way. Anyone who belongs to Christ is a new person. The past is forgotten, and everything is new. God has done it all! He sent Christ to make peace between himself and us, and he has given us the work of making peace between himself and others. What we mean is that God was in Christ, offering peace and forgiveness to the people of this world. And he has given us the work of sharing his message about peace.
Have you asked God to take the reins of your life, do you want to know that resurrection power, day to day. Ask Him to help you live a selfless life like Jesus did He thought and cared for others, He talked with His father God, and then He made the ultimate sacrifice, gave up His life for each and everyone of us.He is there ready and waiting to walk with you, live your life with you, will you let Him.
We are now going to have a short time of reflection