First “Anniversary” – although there has to be a better word . . .

I have been at Camp Charis in Pelham, GA, for nearly 24 hours now.  I came to set aside time to reflect and remember last year.  It was 52 weeks ago, today, that Christopher left this earth to begin eternity with his God.  I still wrestle with this; believe me, I know that it is real, but it is still so hard to grasp.

So why am I in Pelham Ga?  Well, I decided that this year, I wanted some control over this weekend.  If there is anything that I learned last year, is that there is really so little that I can control.  Here, I am sort of alone, although there are a lot of people around me; some who know my story and some who don’t.  I am free to do as I please, when I want, but I know that my dear friend, Craig, is keeping an eye on me.  

I want for this weekend to be a time to remember and feel the events of last year in a way that I can only do by myself, without having to take care of anybody else.  I have done that some and think I will again before I leave on Monday.  

I have thought a lot about the other lives that were changed that night.  There was a young girl who was driving a truck behind Linda.  I have no idea what impact this has had on her; I don’t suspect much as I understand that she was not taken to the hospital, but quickly released.

There are Keith, Michelle, and Jamie, Linda’s children.  I have so appreciated getting to know them though I regret the opportunity that brought us together.  I have repeatedly tried to reassure them that I have found no fault with their mother that night.  I don’t know what caused the accident, but I firmly believe that Christopher would be here today, had the car he was in that night been going the speed limit.

I don’t know much about how the driver, Christopher’s friend, is doing.  I have never heard much from him.  I have reason to believe he has not reacted to this event as I (and others who knew him well) know that Christopher would have responded.  This has made it hard for me to know how to pray.  

As I have written before, I am not angry with him, but that does not mean that I think that his choices that night do not require consequences.  Fortunately, that is not for me to decide; there is a legal process over which I have no control or influence that will take care of that.  

When I first met Linda’s daughter, she and I agreed that we didn’t want this to ruin this young man’s life.  From the little I know of such things, a failure to deal with this type of trauma appropriately is more likely to have a negative impact on this young man than any consequence that the courts deem appropriate.  I am glad that there is a God in control of this entire situation who I believe loves this young man.

It is that same belief that has given me hope for the future for my life.  If you had asked me before the accident if I would be able to go on if something happened to Christopher, I don’t think that I could even imagine it possible.