Gabe’s dad called us this morning with sad and shocking news. Gabe’s cousin Andrea was killed in a car accident Wednesday morning at 1:30. Tuesday was her birthday. She was 38. Rock (Gabe’s dad) and Sis (Andrea’s mom) are brother and sister. Two of eleven kids in a tight-knit Italian family. Their mom and dad died young, and they lost two brothers tragically many years ago. Losing Andrea will be so hard for them, but I pray God will bring them even closer together and bring glory to His Name.
Please pray for Gabe’s family. For Sis especially. Andrea was her only child, and they were incredibly close.
Gabe’s brother Tug, a youth pastor, was speaking at a funeral today when we got the news about Andrea. Two teenage boys were killed this weekend in a drunk driving accident. A lot of Tug’s youth group kids went to school with these boys. Earlier this year, two kids from the same school were killed–same deal. The funeral was held at the school, and Tug had the opportunity to share God’s Word with a ton of people. Please pray for the families of these boys, for their friends, and that many will come to Christ through this terrible tragedy.
And please pray for Tug. He’s wiped out. Normal youth pastor duties + hours and hours and hours of counseling kids + a funeral + one of his good friends was just in a motorcycle wreck (he’ll be okay) and now Andrea. And pray for Angie (my sis-and-law) and their three kiddos as they minister to Tug and the youth group. When people need Tug, Angie plays single mom a lot. She does a great job, but I know it’s not easy.
And now for some lighter stuff…
Let me preface this by saying that I really don’t mind being a charity case. At one time, I was pretty prideful about not needing people (or their help, their money, their advice, what have you). No more! (okay, it still kicks in on occasion–Gabe would say more frequently than that)
Anyway, there have been times in my life when I’ve been able to bless people with money and gifts. And there have been times when I just didn’t have the resources and had to resort to offering (free) words of encouragement, hugs, laughs, that sort of thing. And then there were times when people saw that I was in need and stepped in to help out.
By now, the fact that I buy my underwear at the thrift store is common knowledge. Then there’s the $21.68 VS gift card (from an anonymous donor) burning a hole in my pocket.
But now, there’s more. I get the mail this afternoon, and there are 2 things for me. An envelope and a package. I open the envelope. It’s from my friend Jamie. It’s another piece of plastic (actually, laminated card stock). One free VS cotton p – – – -. Ha! Jamie just had a baby boy a couple weeks ago. Guess she doesn’t expect to get out and about to the mall before the card expires on April 6. Thanks, Jamie!
Then my package. It’s from my friend Ang in Oregon. Three things– a book she and her sis co-wrote with their dad a few years ago (signed by all 3 of them), one of her dad’s books (also signed–and so sweetly) and a card. I open the card and part of it says, “The gift card is for you to create more scandals. Go wild with your choice of underwear. Gabe can thank me later.” The giftcard is not pink. It’s blue. It’s a $10 giftcard to Goodwill. Goodwill!! Have I mentioned how much I love Ang?
And something I JUST NOW noticed–it says on the back that it’s good for “any of our Goodwill Industries of the Columbia Willamette Retail Locations.” HA! Ang–I have to use this in OREGON! That’s it. I keep saying I’m coming. I HAVE to now! (you’re just trying to trick me into flying out there, aren’t you??)
Speaking of traveling, as you know, we haven’t been to a zoo (except C-bus) in a good long while. We’re taking a BIG leap of faith and planning a Zoo Trip to Texas for the girls’ Spring Break (April 10-19). Obviously, our CA trip in Feb didn’t happen, but we never really made plans either. This time we are. If God wants to make a way, He will. And if not, we’ll head to Michigan or something. Or maybe a dinky zoo in West Virginia. And I’m going back and trying to find everyone who said they live in OK or TX and want to Zoo It with us (or let us stay with them–or both!). If that’s you, a reminder would be sweet (hint, hint).
And no, this is not a subtle plea for gas $ and Pei Wei gift cards. It is, however, a request for prayer. Please pray for a huge measure of faith, wisdom, discernment and provision. God has made it more than obvious that He cares about every detail of our lives. From tragedy and heartache to zoos and underwear. God cares. And He is good.
Have a beautiful day, friends! Thanks for praying for Gabe’s family!