“Commit your way to the LORD;
Trust in him and he will do this.
He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn,
The justice of your cause like the noonday sun.
Be still before the LORD and wait paitently for him…”
Yesterday marked the 17th anniversary of Heidi’s disappearance. I was blessed with an array of blessings from God, reminding me of His love and provision for me. I received phone calls, voice mails, emails, blog postings, Face Book postings and messages, hugs, and a beautiful flower (above) from my beloved church family in Heidi’s honor. The Ride for Missing Children has 180 riders that took time out of their Sunday to dedicate their training ride to Heidi and the family. This was the best couple weeks leading up to the anniversary date I think I’ve ever had ~ with God’s strength…wow! I made it!
I’ve teased you over the past two weeks about a revelation I had while putting together this blog series and I’ve waited until today to reveal it. Heidi was 18 years old, yesterday represents the 17th anniversary of her disappearance which means that today, Monday, April 4th, 2011 marks the start of the 18th year for her to be missing. (I’ll pause for a minute so this concept can resignate in your head…) Maybe some of you realized this long before I did yet it was new to me. As I mentioned the year in a couple of the blogs it hit me like a ton of bricks – we are starting a journey I never anticipated. Heidi will be missing for nearly as long as she was alive!
I remember sitting in Albany for New York State Missing Person’s Day (the 10th anniversary gathering is this Saturday, 4/9) one year when a woman shared her loved one had been missing for over twenty-five years. I started to cry and talk with God…”I’m not strong enough for this Lord…25 years is a long time.” As I felt His arms wrap around me and whisper in my ear, “You’re not alone Lisa, I’m right here and always have been.” I can’t do it on my own but if it is God’s will, then I will rest in His arms and strength to persevere until Heidi is found.
My gram has another saying…”So goes Monday…so goes the week!” I’m praying for a wonderful day today, for you and for me. I submitted my book proposal for the first time this past Friday to an agent. As I hit the send button my stomach started to churn – “This is real, thank you Jesus” and then Saturday evening as I reviewed my proposal one last time I noticed a huge mistake. UGH! After a prayer to calm myself I emailed a friend for advice –she is a wise woman and was able to both calm me down and provide great insight and direction. (Thank YOU!)
So this afternoon, after returning from urgent care with my mother and before leaving for AWANA I drafted a letter to the agent with the intent of sending it to my friend to preview before I sent it, so I didn’t sound like a ding-a-ling. Well…between the anniversary date, mom at urgent care and preparing to head out – instead of sending it to my friend, I sent it to the agent! Double Ugh…I just laid my head down and cried…I cried for Heidi. I cried for my mom. I cried for making foolish mistakes. I cried two weeks worth of tears.
Instead of shining for Jesus with the best I could do…I felt like a failure. There was nothing I could do but apologize and seek forgiveness. I want my writing to reflect Jesus and for others to see Him in all I do yet it didn’t happen that way this weekend. I apologized to the agent, thanked my friend, cried some more and shut the computer off. With the help of some sisters in christ I realized, it was the “I” that was the issue. I needed to give it to Jesus since it has been Him and His strength every step of the way – so on my knees in thanksgiving for being an understanding, loving and forgiving God…I prayed. God is good all the time…and all the time…God is good!
In reflection – although the day wasn’t as I planned, it was a good day. I spent the entire day with my parents. Generally April 3rd is spent in isolation – all healing and dealing in our own way, this year…God had us together for the majority of the day. A hidden blessing during this storm…in the midst of this trials we need to see the positive. I’m thankful for a day with my Mom, shopping after church would have been fun yet to know Mom trust me enough to call when she needs something…I’m blessed beyond words.
Today is the start of the 18th year of Heidi’s disappearance, the start of another week writing for God and learning from my mistakes and moving forward. Today is Monday, “So goes Monday, so goes the week!” I say we make the best of it…it is and always has been, in God’s hands, not mine.