Tuesday, June 13, 2006

There were times as BJ grew up that I would look at him and draw parallels to my own life. I can't explain why exactly except to add that as a single adult with no children of my own I often have found myself living vicariously through the lives of my nephews and nieces, much as I assume many parents do. My brother and sister's kids are all such special people and I would love to have any one of them as my own.

I couldn't help but compare my own childhood to BJ as he grew. As a boy, there was a special relationship with him - for one reason, he took a lot of pressure off of me to continue the family name when he came into this world! Anyway, I would identify with Beej as he grew, much of that identity no doubt based on his small stature through most of his years and my own to this day.

How alike I thought we were at times, at least my observation of him and perception of my own youth. We were both relatively shy and quiet (maybe less so at home), the third child in our family, etc. However, it soon became apparent to me that he was going to be much more socially inclined like his father Brent; less introverted than I had been. One of the things that drew BJ out of his shy nature was his love for the Lord and his burning desire at a very young age to share His love with others. He couldn't and wouldn't let anything get in his way with something so important.

That is the big difference between the me of my youth and my nephew, his faith became his reason for being and eventually transcended any of his shyness. He never lost the "faith of a child" even as he matured as a Christian to a point at 15 years old well beyond my own at 44.

While I hadn't lost my faith I had lost my passion, for sharing and even at times, knowing Christ. I had sunk back into the lethargy of complacency -- letting it ride until and unless some opportunity to share just fell into my lap but almost never seeking those opportunities out. Sometimes I might get riled up enough to defend my faith if I heard something absurd enough at a moment of motivation.

I played defense (occasionally) and rarely had an active offense. BJ relied less on the shield and more on the sword, but in a way that slashed sin but left the individual intact. He didn't white-wash the truth but shared it with love and an obvious desire to truly love others into the kingdom, and that kind of passion is hard to resist.

I'm struggling still with taking the offensive more often, even more so to not be offensive in the process of sharing truth. The whole experience of BJ's illness, his journals, hearing from friends and strangers, shook me out of that complacency in a shocking way. Managing not to slide back into it is a daily struggle. I'm so thankful that our Heavenly Father understands these struggles and helps us to overcome them if we truly seek his help, no matter how shy and introverted we might be.

May His strength sustain you today,

Brad

P.S. I don't have regular internet access right now so the timing of my posts may vary for a while - sorry!

6 Comments:

At 4:59 PM, Anonymous Linda Anderson said...

Thank you Brad for taking the time to tell us your wonderful stories of Bj,and yourself. I look forward to them. They are awesome! I can tell the BJ got his gift of writing from all of you. Thank you for being willing to open your heart to us.

Linda Anderson

P.S. Glad to hear you are feeling better! God bless!

 
At 5:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Brad- Thank you for sharing. Your willingness to keep posting is a blessing to us. We are glad that you are feeling better.

 
At 11:02 PM, Blogger Praying in Pink said...

Brad, We share not only the cervical disc issue but the introvert issue! I have noticed God giving even behind-the-scenes people like me the strength to boldly wield a sword as I allow Him to work in my life.

I know that was BJ's approach. He just "got it" much sooner than most of us do--no doubt because he spent so much time in the Word and developed the "heartbeat of obedience" he learned about at Awe Star University.

Blog family, please pray for the students who will be coming to those days of training on Saturday. Some have served before, and others are brand new to the ministry. All have much to absorb in just a few days--just as BJ did so amazingly when he attended ASU for the first time in 2004. Brent, Deanna, Lauren, and the other leaders are preparing for that time right now. I know you are continuing to lift them up as well.

under the Mercy (in any color),

Marti

 
At 12:14 AM, Blogger Cousin Beth said...

Brad,
Thanks so much for sharing your heart in all of this. My heart continues to break as I read. I'm so glad you're on the mend. We love you much and wish we could see you more. You are all on our minds.
Love,
Beth

 
At 11:23 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey there, Brad,
Thanks so much for sharing with us. Looking forward to hearing more of your stories, convictions and memories. Writing certainly runs in your family. You were a great influence on BJ in many ways. The few times I saw y'all together, I knew your relationship was special.

Our prayers are with you for a speedy and complete recovery. With all that's happening at the camp, I'm sure you'll be tempted to work too much. Since I'm older than you (5 years, anyway), I'll ask you to please be careful. No other injuries allowed, OK????
Take care fellow uncle,
Dan
Deer Park, TX

 
At 2:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Higgins Family continues to amaze me and bless me! Brad, thank you so much for sharing. I will continue to pray for all of your family.

In His perfect love,
Lori
Everett, WA

 

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