Happy October all,
“Brandon is doing fine.” That’s the message I received from Brandon’s mom yesterday, texting from Macon. Yes, Brandon is now in Macon continuing his brave and awe-inspiring journey. I visited with him last week while he was still in Atlanta. And while not able to communicate, he was alert and aware. He continues to touch just about everyone he encounters with his remarkable presence and light. We know without a doubt it is the Holy Spirit who indwells.
His mom joked the other day that one of Brandon’s nurses, who in the beginning seemed rather stoic and somber, surprised her one afternoon as she walked out the room saying, “You have to keep the faith.” We all know that’s the effect Brandon has on people!
I am reminded of Brandon’s words he shared during his testimony at church in 2012. Those words are that “God is Able.” Whatever we might face, however unexpected and life-changing it is, God is able to keep us while we go through it and bring us out on the other side. But we must do our part and keep going. So let us “run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfector of our faith…” (Hebrews 12:1-2)
My name is Tieler, and Brandon has given his blessing for me to provide this latest post. Last March, Brandon and I sat down to talk about his story and from that Brandnu Possibilities was born. Togther we’ve worked to update the blog and share his message with so many of you. Little did I know what would come of it… but God certainly knew.
So I’m bringing greetings from Brandon. I visited with him yesterday and despite the challenges and setbacks, he’s still smiling (photo). These days, it’s a little difficult for him to write, type and speak. But believe me when I tell you, his light is still shining bright, and those of you who know Brandon will agree, it speaks on its own. Continue reading
On Monday May 18, 2013 Oklahoma was ravaged by a tornado. This tornado was one of the worst in recorded history. It was initially categorized as an E4 but upgraded to an E5. The city devastated by this powerful storm was Moore, Oklahoma. The tornado decimated neighborhoods and destroyed schools. It unfortunately claimed 24 lives, 10 of them children no older than 8 year old.
In a disaster like this, there are two kinds of emergency responses. The initial response is called search and rescue. That is when first responders believe people are still alive and they have a greater chance to save the life of the person found. When that portion is over, timeframe is flexible, they move to search and recover. This is when emergency workers search through the debris and see if there is a person to recover. It is called “recover” because that person is beyond the point of being saved and the task now is simply “recover” them.
Now, the long road to a sense of normalcy in Moore begins. A major part of the recovery process for residents is gaining a personal sense that their world is improving. Many cannot get this equilibrium until a shift is made in their mindsets. They need to shift from recovery to rescue. Every individual situation is different, but this fact is in them all: thinking greatly affects the outcome. The Apostle Paul realized this truth and penned, “but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”
This very important shift happens when we, collectively, help the citizens of Moore know that they are NOT beyond the point of being saved. We can donate, we can volunteer, we can assist in rebuilding, and we can pray.
Please do your part in helping our neighbors and fellowmen.
Since the beginning of March, it has been a unique experience. Since around the 2nd or 3rd of the month, I have not had feeling on my left side. It is not complete paralysis, but I have trouble recognizing when I’m touching an object or distinguishing between hot, warm, cool and cold. I drop things more than before. It is a struggle to turn on and off my light and just do some basic things you don’t usually have to think about. (In case you’re curious, I have help typing and posting to this blog. As you can imagine, it has becom more difficult.) Continue reading
A few months ago, I started a series about the story of The Prodigal Son. Read the story here. And here are the earlier posts: Part I, Part II and Part III. For this fourth and final reflection, I want to look at the main character of the story, the lost son.
There is a lot you and I can take from the son and his journey to find his way back home. Two things that stood out to me were the lessons of patience and humility. Continue reading