When I get up in the morning, what is the first thought that enters into my mind? Sometimes, I admit the first thoughts are all the things I need to get done in the next 24 hours, but I have found that if I can just surrender my day to God even before I get out of bed, the day will go much better. Beth Moore once said-- before you even get out of bed every day decide in your mind who is your Master for the day--who has control of your day---just who are am I going to serve. No, actually no one who is a Christian would conscientiously choose to serve anybody or anything but Jesus, but I have found unless I conscientiously think those thoughts, my priorities may become all mixed up for the day. Satan loves to get control of my mind and my day and take me down the road of despair, sadness, or even the "what if's", for that matter anything that can be discouraging---satan is just waiting for a small crack to get in the door.
It seems like Friday's can still be one of the worst days of the week for me. I got up last Friday, just feeling sad and very lonely---worse than I have for several weeks. I really did not know why, but those feelings were just in my heart. I had to make some phone calls, but the number I needed was on my cell phone, so I had to go through the saved messages to get to the number I wanted. I usually do not listen to any of them, but on Friday, when I came to the one from Craig (Taylor's teacher that left the message the day of his accident), I could not help myself, I just had to sit down and listen to it. Just listening to that message again, brought everything right back into clear focus, like it just happened today. It seems like when I am having a bad day, i know this probably sounds strange, but instead of stopping all my thoughts about those terrible moments and days that followed, it is like I am drawn to go back and go through those devastating days again. I don't know if this healing, or just a plain crazy thing to do. After I listened to Craig's message, I could not help but to cry a few tears. My heart was so sad. The rest of the morning, I just kept thinking about Taylor and at times cried a few more tears. I am sure God was right there beside me, even though for awhile i was lost in my grief and lost focus of Jesus's face. I just felt the whole day, I was on the verge of tears, and was wanting this day to be over and hoped tomorrow the clouds would not be so thick and heavy in my heart.
Like I said, God is so often my Great Comforter, and Friday was no different. I came down to the computer to write to someone's in their inbox on facebook. When I got on facebook, I by mistake was on Spencer's account, instead of my own. I went to the inbox to write my message and God opened my eyes to something He wanted me to see. I noticed that there was message there that was unread, so thinking it was mine, i started to read it. The more I read, the more my eyes filled with tears and my heart was both breaking and rejoicing. It was a friend of Taylor's that did not know our e-mail address, but wanted to write a memory in Taylor's memory for Christmas. She wrote this on Christmas morning at 2:38 AM. I am just going to post the whole thing, and give God all the Glory. She wrote
Dear Gasser Family, I am sorry I am writing my letter to you through facebook, but I still wanted to take part in your Christmas letters about Taylor. I met Taylor clear back at Sterling when we were little kids. We used to play soccer on the fields at recess. he was always so shy and quite, as we grew older we became friends through track and had many great laughs and wins together. Taylor would light up any room he walked into with his smile and I will never forget how perfect it was. After graduation I didn't see him around much but then I ran into him this past summer in July in Wooster. We talked for a bit and went our ways not knowing this would be our last meeting-----I am a fire fighter and an EMT for sterling and I remember hearing that call go out over my pager. it is something I will never forget in my lifetime----at the time i didn't know who it was but I remember just praying to God that it wasn't someone I knew. The next morning when I woke up my mom had called and told me who it was. I never in my wildest dreams expected it to be him. At Taylor's funeral I could barely function. I remember hugging each and everyone of you and feeling so empty and lost for words, but during his service something came over me. I remember Taylor's uncle preaching about how Taylor can't come to us, but we can go to him. I truly believe that Taylor was an Angel sent here to serve his purpose and i am here today to tell you that Taylor has changed my life completely. As i sat at his service with my classmates listening to what his uncle was saying I gave my heart to God completely. If no one else from that day from my class got anything out of what his uncle said just know this......Taylor saved my life and served his purpose. He truly is a blessing from God and I thank God for him everyday. I pray for your family everyday for God to give your family the strength to carry on. I honestly believe that God only gives you what He knows you can handle and I truly believe Taylor is up in heaven with God looking down on his family and friends everyday waiting for us to join him. Your son changed my life and I can't wait t to thank him someday for it! Merry Christmas and God Bless.
After reading this I just layed my head down on the computer desk and sobbed---God, You are my very best friend and my Great Comforter---You knew I needed this encouragement today. It is such encouragment to know that Taylor's death was not in vain----Perhaps other classmates, parents of classmates, friends are being saved because of his death. How many more gave their hearts to Jesus that day, or maybe in the days that followed???? It again reminds me that God has a perfect plan and does what is best for each one of His Children.. Would Taylor have given his life to "wake" up his friends----I believe he would have. He probably would not have said a quick "Yes", but after thinking about it a bit---I believe Taylor would have done it--- I can just see him looking down smiling and saying I am so glad you are choosing to live your life for Jesus----you will never ever be sorry!!!!! I pray there were many more sitting at Taylor's service saying those same words----giving their lives completely to Jesus.
I asked Spencer if he had ever read that in his inbox, He said he has never seen it. I just sat there and thought how God is so awesome and works everything out in His perfect timing----I can not get into spencer's facebook, because he has a password to get into it, but on this day----it was left open, so I just got into it by mistake, well in God's eye's it was no mistake, it was by His Hand directing me to it. Nothing, and I mean Nothing is "why accident", with God, everything is for a purpose or has a purpose in His Master Plan.
But God was not done encouraging me for the day. Jeff got the mail in and there was a card from Amber with a poem in it. Actually, I still get a card or two almost every week---God's people are amazing!! He uses them to carry and encourage me when I need it most. And what is so amazing is that they always come on just the right day--- a day when God sees I need to be carried for a while Anyway, I want to share it-----it fit just perfectly---What! is that a surprise---God in the right place at the right time!!!
"You can shed tears that he is gone,
or you can smile because he has lived.
You can close your eyes & pray he'll come back,
or you can open your eyes & see all he's left.
Your heart can be empty because you can't see him,
or you can be full of the love you shared.
You can turn your back on tomorrow and live yesterday,
or you can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday.
You can remember him only that he is gone,
or you can cherish his memory and let it live on.
You can cry and close your mind, be empty and turn back,
or you can do what he'd want---smile , open your eyes, love and go on.
I can see Taylor saying each line to me---and yes, even though, my heart can be sad, I can also smile.
God was merciful,-- Saturday was a better day. Another one of Taylor's friends came over and brought some more pictures of Taylor---some were ones I have never seen. It again, makes my heart so sad, but so glad to have them. We talked for a couple of hours, but did notice that this time we did not spend the whole time talking about Taylor---so there must be some healing there. It is so nice to see and talk with Taylor's friends---it in some way makes me feel a little bit closer to him. I know it is so sad that i got to know his friends so much better through his death than in his life. That is a change I am trying to make with the other two---get to know their friends much better now. I also decided to go out to the cemetery on Saturday afternoon, again something I have not done in several weeks. Yes, i did cry a few more tears, but I guess that will be for a long time, because each time I go out there, the thoughts that keeps running through my mind are----he is way too young to be out here----this can't really be my reality----just why Taylor---and then I stand there and look at his picture----But I always stay long enough to let God answer each one of those questions---it is all the same answer----My Plan is perfect and someday you will understand----then I go home.
God is my Great Comforter now and forever!!!!!