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In Memory of my cousins, Christopher and Miles Waddell

{I wanted to share what has been on my heart over the past week. I’m sorry it is so long but I feel the Lord will use it to speak to someone’s heart tonight.}

Tonight makes one week since Christopher and Miles were in a tragic car accident where a drunk driver crossed the center line and hit them head-on. I have asked the question, along with many others this week, why would such a tragic thing happen to two young men, and a family, who love the Lord with all their heart? Why did Christopher have to die, and Miles continues to fight for his life in ICU, while the drunk driver walks away with his life spared? Why did such a tragedy, one that we don’t understand, never would have thought, and makes us so angry, have to happen? While I don’t have the answer to these questions, I know the One who does. And because I know Him, I know nothing happens to us that does not get filtered through His hands first – He allows it to happen with purpose we may not understand. Jesus replied, “You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.” (John 13:7)

We live in a sin-filled, broken world. Because of this, God tells us, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33) “Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him.” (John 9:3) As much as we want Christopher with us, and for Miles to be restored and healed in Jesus’s name, their lives are being used by the One who knit them together in Myra’s womb, to glory Him, so that His power and mighty works can be displayed in and through them to reach a dark and lost world. “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.” (Genesis 50:20) I believe this verse has been fulfilled, and will continue TO BE fulfilled throughout eternity, due to the hand of God working in Christopher and Miles’s life. I believe that through this tragedy, many will call upon the name of the Lord as their Savior for the first time, and many more will be drawn closer in their relationship with their Father. We may not understand why this had to happen on this side of Heaven, but we can trust in His sovereignty and “…that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)

So where does that leave those whom have been blessed to know and love Christopher and Miles? We simply look to this passage and trust in God’s promises: “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” (James 1:2-4) As hard as it may be, we are to be JOYFUL through trials because we know there is a work happening within us that makes us better; our faith is made stronger in God than it ever had been before. And through the trial and testing of your faith, you slowly become more and more like Christ.

As I was thinking about all these things this week, I was overwhelmed by the eternal hope of our Lord and Savior. The hope that Christopher and Miles clung to and put their trust in. You see, they realized at an early age that we are all sinners and have fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). Because of this, if we don’t see ourselves as sinners, we won’t see our desperate need for a Savior. A Savior who, with arms wide open, welcomed Christopher into His presence last Monday night. How beautiful that sweet moment must have been, to see Jesus face to face!

UPDATE: Miles just entered into the presence of His Lord and Savior, where his body has been made new! With much sadness in my heart, I ask that you to fall to your knees and flood Heaven’s gates with prayers for the Waddell family. As I was praying for Miles last night, I came across a picture of Christopher and Miles. What Miles wrote beneath it just broke my heart (This is one of those people I couldn’t live without in my life. He is my partner in crime, my sidekick, and most of all he is the best brother I could ever ask for and I love him. #brothersforever) I can say without a doubt in my mind, Christopher and Miles are in the presence of our Father…together.

Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever…But as for me, it is good to be near God. I have made the Sovereign Lord my refuge; I will tell of all your deeds. (‭Psalm‬ ‭73‬:‭25-26, 28‬ NIV)

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