Surrendering to His Will

My story of hope comes through tragedy as on 1/20/2012, I had to say good-bye to my husband who was only 34 yrs old. A God-fearing man and one of great faith, he was an inspiration to those who knew him, including myself. After being hospitalized in the ICU for 3 weeks, and battling various conditions including septis, a medically induced coma, liver failure, kidney failure, and a variety of other serious ailments, he was called home. Before his health worsened in the hospital my husband and I were able to talk together and pray together, laugh together, and cry together: moments of hope I will always hold onto.
There were many times during the long days and nights on my make shift bed in the ICU waiting room or holding my husband's hands at his bedside that I would wonder how we got here or why we were on this path. We were together for almost twelve years, married almost 7. It was a love story written by God as for the first 5 yrs of our relationship we were only physically in the same place for two and a half years and we still fell in love every day. He played professional basketball overseas and there's not a doubt in my mind he used those opportunities to minister, just as he had done in the past through his involvement with Athletes in Action. When we envisioned our future and life together we did not plan on or see ourselves being where we were earlier this year. Despite various questions and uncertainties about what transpired with his health and what transpired so quickly, not once did I ever doubt that God was by our side. Through the various procedures, surgeries, daily dialysis, medical miracles and sudden setbacks, I always felt God's nail scarred hands around us. The same hands that welcomed my husband home continue to comfort me today. We prayed for a miracle for my husband; miraculous healing and a full recovery. God didn't answer that prayer but my husband still got his miracle...he is now seated in paradise with his Maker. Through the constant pain and tears I cling to the One who always promises to comfort me; to the One who tells me: "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest." (Matthew 11:28); the One who knows exactly what it feels like to lose someone you love more than yourself.
I know on that cold, snowy, Friday night, God cried with us as we walked my husband to the gates of heaven. I think God's tears, though, were out of joy as His son had returned home. My hope comes in that because I knew of his salvation and because I know of mine, I know I will see my husband again and that I will spend eternity with him. My hope for everyone else, though, is that through this tragedy, through my husband's life and untimely death, many others will learn of, for the first time, or be reminded of, for the hundredth time, of God's unfailing love and mercy, through even the darkest of days...and then one more soul can find their way home. This is my story of hope.
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