Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Last night, after more Christmas shopping, Deanna and I collapsed into a couple of comfy chairs at Starbucks. As I drifted off in thought Deanna asked me where I was. I told her I was thinking about Beej. Little things... how he always ordered root beer with no ice, wore socks to bed, huddled on the floor to do his quiet time, etc.

Then I told her how in hindsight that it appeared the Lord had begun to prepare us for our "empty nest." A couple of years ago, while on a mission trip to Alaska, Lauren was asked to stay, when the rest of our group returned home. She was needed to counsel youth at a wilderness camp - Echo Ranch- as a replacement for another who had been injured. Leaving her behind, knowing I could not talk to her, knowing she had no flight booked, knowing all the normal parental securities were absent, was the most difficult thing I had done to that point. As I prepared to board a return flight, we wept together, and made quite a scene.

Leaving her at college (as a freshman) a few months later, was suddenly a very easy task.

Next, the Lord moved us to Highland Lakes Baptist Camp to take on a ministry position. We left Whitney in the watchcare of some dear friends back in Indy, so that she could finish her senior year of high school at Carmel. That became very traumatic for us, as we did not expect the kind of separation that ensued. We lost her a year earlier than we expected, and it was not easy.

In the meantime, sending Beej to the mission field seemed like a much easier decision. We knew he was ready, we knew the Lord was leading him there. We would not say "no," not even now. (Lauren is to go to Africa in the spring, and more mission trips are on the horizon for our family, Lord willing).

We did not expect the ultimate outcome. When Beej passed, and we returned home, we had our girls with us... we all slept in the same bed that first night...but eventually they left to return to their lives, their callings, and our home emptied, and it echoes. There don't seem to be enough bodies to deaden the sound. We lost him, not a couple months early, not a year early, but a lifetime early.

Oh how we anticipate Lauren and Whitney's arrival home for Christmas break. Lauren returns tonight, and Whit later.

Our nest is empty, but our hearts are full. Full of the love of Christ. How He has sustained us, and held us. Because we are His, He will continue. His promises are true, and He is faithful. When God our Father allowed His one and only Son to be condemned and crucified, His pain must have been so much greater than ours. He was born to die...for He bore the weight of the world, and His Father knew this, and still he allowed Him to come.

Love your children as God loves you, but when He calls them, His plan, His security, His timing is what matters in their lives. Do not be a hindrance to the call on the lives of your offspring. The Creator of all is on the throne, He will carry you through the difficult days if your eyes are on Him. Oh how He loves you and me!

dad

17 Comments:

At 8:10 AM, Blogger *kim said...

I don't think it is any small thing that God has entrusted you to understand a bit of the pain and grief and anguish He felt in losing His son. Your faith is amazing and everyday I pray for you to be encouraged and your faith strengthened.

The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; His mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness." - Lam. 3:22-23

I am praying that everyday you will taste the grace and love God has for us, that every day He will be strong in His presence near you, and that in your grief you will somehow encounter new ways of understanding God's character and in that, find healing and peace. I love you very much. *kim

 
At 8:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

still reading daily...God Bless you from Greenfield, Indiana

 
At 8:41 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Like Greenfield, IN; I still read daily and I am blessed by your comments and insight and your love for our Lord.

Susie
Evansville

 
At 8:51 AM, Blogger the leaf family said...

Michael will be 16 on Friday. It seems that time is going so fast. Sarah is already 14 and starts Highschool in the Fall..
I hear so many parents grumble about having 2 more years left with thier teens at home. I feel like I only have 2 more years with our son and 4 with our daughter. Every time I think of you guys and BJ these years seem even more precious and even shorter.
I pray for you guys everyday...

I have a prayer request. I have a young friend, 15 year old girl, that is in foster care. She has no one. She has been told by her family that she is not wanted and has seen more in her life time up to now then most of us ever will. We can't find a foster home for her because she is a teen. And our residential places will not take her because she has an IQ lower then 70. We are really struggling with her right now. She is a sweet and delightful young girl. I do get to take her to our church tonight, (God's hand is defintly in that one) Just pray that someone will want her and love her.. That we can find placement in a good foster home for her..
Again, she makes me hug my kids a lot tighter every night..
With all my love and prayers from KC-Tracy

 
At 10:20 AM, Blogger Linda Ronne said...

So many times these past few weeks you have brought tears to my eyes through your writings and today is no exception.
I know my homesickness does not, and cannot compare to your feelings, but I do know that when I ask the Lord to fill me with His peace and comfort, He meets me right where I am and fills every need. I pray He continues to be your source of strength, your fortress, strong tower, the rock on which you stand, everything that you want or need that you find it in Him.
May I ask you to continue to pray for Hollie, (I long to see the call of the Lord on her life), things here are continuing to worsen and we feel like we are drowning.

In His Love
Linda
Shawnee,Ok

 
At 10:33 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is amazing that each of us have a cross to bear - some heavier than others, it seems. I pray for the young lady in need of love and foster parents in KC. I pray that a home of loving and giving Christian people take her in and make a mark of love on her heart and in her soul. She needs hugs. I also pray for Hollie - that you lift her to the Lord, give Him the authority to deal with the situation and allow yourselves to breath air again. Do not allow yourselves to drown in Satan's glory, raise her up to the Lord and let Him be glorified in your trusing Him.

 
At 1:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Higgin Family,
I read your blog daily, and you seem to have so much strenght. I have not posted in a while, but I lost my mom at the age of 48 in April of 2005. She was killed in a car accident on the way to pick up my son from school. I have so much guilt. If she was not going to pick up my son from school would she still be here today?
With the holidays coming up, my family is very depressed and trying to figure out how we are going to cope thru the holidays.
Your strenght amazes me daily.
Thank you for your post.
Tandy
Denton, Texas

 
At 1:02 PM, Anonymous April C. said...

Lauren,

I will be going to Africa in the summer so when you get back I would love to hear of the amazing things that God is doing over there. Please know that I will start praying daily for you and whoever else is going with you.

Thank you so much for the post this morning. Our God is indeed very good and He always prepares us for what is to come, even if we don't see it at the time. Remember, life by the yard is hard but life by the inch is a cinch (sp?).
Thanks so much for the continual blessings.


April Cowan
Odessa, Tx

 
At 1:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Higgins Family,

I still visit and read daily. Your family still sits heavy on my heart and mind. BJ was such an inspiration to me and helped me realize that the time to give my life to the lord is Right Now.
Your blogs speak heavy to me daily and I thank God for them!

I will soon be baptised and I feel like I owe a lot to your family and BJ - for helping to bring me to the lord. God laid a big hand on my heart through BJ.

Brent, just as you said - the devil is working hard on my life right now. I'm staying strong and faithful that God has bigger and better plans for me and I refuse to give in to the devils torment.
Please keep me and my 2 girls in your prayers - we need it.

Much love and God bless,

Christy K.
INDPLS, IN

PS. I try to read most blogs also - and to the others needing prayers - I will pray for you! God bless the foster teen and may she soon find a loving home!

 
At 1:55 PM, Anonymous Bonnie said...

Brent-

You and your family have such precious hearts. I am always touched when I read about your thoughts and feelings. I can't wait for you and your girls to be home together for the holidays, I am sure it will be so uplifting for you all.
Love,
Bonnie (Cate)

 
At 6:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I haven't been able to read in a few days and coming back and reading is so encourging and refreshing. Your love for the Lord is so evident and I pray the Lord will continue to comfort you and give you a joyous Christmas season with the girls back with you.

 
At 6:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you again for your posts. This one hit especially close to home, as our pastor son-in-law just moved our daughter and three grandchildren 2000 miles away from us, and oh, how it hurts. We were careful not to stand in their way, and now must deal with the loss, which of course in no way compares to yours, but is loss, nonetheless.

I'm praying especially tonight for Lauren's safe travels, as the weather is pretty yucky up here in Marion right now. I hope she got away early.

Praying, too, for the other requests among the blog family.

Anne

 
At 8:38 PM, Anonymous hannah said...

thank you for sharing your heart, your lives...
you and your family continue to be a light and inspiration! may God bless your family and keep you in His love this Christmas!

fervently praying,
Hannah DeGuzman

 
At 11:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am encouraged by your comments tonight..I have a little insight to your situation because of what my son and his family are going thru since the loss of their daughter Nikki...{my beloved granddaughter} at the age of 14 the day befor Easter of this year..Since Nikki died her family has lost their home..their cars and wages have been garnished for payment of medical bills..their almost 18 year old daughter moved to Minnesota with her boyfriend and his parents{A Godly family} This year it will be the 4 of them for Christmas..last year they had 15 stockings hung and as many guest staying there for Christmas..along with the loss of Nikki by death and the loss of the daughter that moved they have great financial problems and will have a very meager Christmas..I pray for them all the time and I am reminded of the trials of Job and how the Lord our God restored all to him... plus... and I am beleiving this for my beloved family..I am praying for the developmentally disabled foster child as I have a 31 year old developmentally delayed daughter and I often wonder who will love her and care for her when her dad and I are gone am gone. Gods Blessings on you..Chris and Marlas friend in California

 
At 12:16 AM, Blogger Lattany said...

Such faith exemplified by holding your children in hands of out-stretched arms.

Praying for the Leaf family's request for the foster child. If you see this, what's her name?

Lattany
Fairfax, VA, USA

 
At 8:24 AM, Blogger Daniel Martin said...

brent...shoot me an email when you get this: daniel@simplydk.com

 
At 8:45 AM, Blogger Barbara Ann said...

Thanks...just thanks for that.

Barbara Ann

 

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