“I remember when it first happened, when we missed the first turn. I can’t forget it because it was on my side of the bus that we hit one of the pillars on the side of the road.
And given our high speed, you can imagine how hard the hit was. But instead of stopping the car, the driver tried to get back on the road and missed a second turn and we hit yet another pillar.
I don’t remember the rest but I was later told that he still tried to get back on the road, at the same speed, missed a third turn, hit another pillar and overturned three times on the side of the road... next thing I know, I was in a hospital.”
August 23rd, 2003… Today marks exactly six years since it all happened. Six years since the last time I was able to stand on my two legs.
Six years since I was told that I would only be able to move around using a wheelchair. Six years, since we lost a spiritual leader, a friend, a father and a husband.
Six years since questions with no answers have been flooding our hearts. Six years of praying and waiting for a miracle… the miracle.
But it’s also been six years of reflecting on where I’ve been, where I am and where I am going. Six years of totally depending on God to get me where He wants me to be. Six years of trusting Him with my life and my health.
Six years of lying in His arms and letting Him carry me. Six years of praising Him, worshiping Him and still loving Him.
Six years of discovering strength and faith I never thought I had. Six years of meeting amazing people and making new friends. Six years of reaching out, touching lives and encouraging people.
Six years of learning that no matter whom, no matter how and no matter where I am, He can still use me. Six years of more grace and mercy.
Six years of experiencing His blessing s through the little things in life, six years of realizing that miracles happen every day and that my life itself is a miracle.
If someone had told me, when I was still on that hospital bed, that I would still be in a wheelchair today, I think I would have told them I would rather die… or that it would just kill me.
But I am here; six years later, still on the wheelchair but also, still standing, still living and most of all, still trusting.
Still standing on God’s promises and believing that what He says in His word is true and that what He has promised He will bring to pass. He is not a man that He should lie, nor a son of man that He should change His mind.
How glad am I that He is nothing like man and will never disappoint me or break my heart.
He has promised to love me, to never forsake me and He will never change His mind.
Still living the life I have and not taking for granted the fact that I am still alive. I know He has a purpose for me, I know He has a future for me, but I will not sit waiting for it, I am alive today and I will keep on living until I see the promises coming to pass.
I will live to bring glory to His name in any way I can and wherever I am. I will live to reach out, touch and comfort another life. Living knowing that there’s still so much I can do and so many people I can help.
Still trusting that God has not forgotten me and that He knows my name, that He will see me through the fire, through the waters, in the valley and in the storm.
I am trusting that He sees my tears, He hears my prayer and He understands my pain. I am trusting that weeping may remain for a night but joy comes in the morning, that them that sow in tears will reap with songs of joy.
I am trusting that I shall see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living and that I shall not die but live to proclaim what the Lord has done.
The past six years have been hard and so many times I felt like I could not go on and I wanted to give up. So many times I really felt like God had forgotten about me, that He had given up on me and that I just couldn’t be used by Him anymore with all the people around and available.
Sometimes He seemed so far away, or just not there. Sometimes I would feel like I have been crying and praying forever with no one out there listening to me.
And sometimes I felt that I deserved it all for some sin I had committed or something. Sometimes I felt that maybe I was the one who just didn’t have faith and wasn’t strong enough… and I cried… and I prayed.... and I cried some more.
But you know what? We serve an amazing God… we really do. He has been there through it all, He has held my hand, He has wiped away my tears and He has reminded me over and over of His love for me.
That I was special and precious in His eyes and that as long as I would let Him He would use me… and He has. He has also brought the right people, the right word, the right song… at the right time. He has given me reasons to smile and praise Him over and over again. He has been my strength, my joy, my peace, my life.
Whenever I felt like I couldn’t go on, He has been there, through friends, family members, church leaders… to pull me up and walk with me during the hardest miles.
And sometimes He has brought people I could help with their own problems that were not as bad as my own but could make me forget about myself and be there for someone else.
And I have found that through being there for someone else, you forget about what you have been going through and you realize that God can still use you.
There have been times when I didn’t see the point of getting out of bed in the morning but the thought of that one person that might need someone like me just to be there for them has gotten me up and ready for a new day.
And through that God has shown me that despite all I have been through, He is not through with me yet.
Despite the hurt, the abuse of some people, the mockery and the bad treatment I have experienced at times, despite people thinking that I can’t do anything anymore or making me feel like I could have been better off dead, God shows me that He can use me even more now, if I let Him.
He has reminded me that it is all for His glory and it is not about me, it’s all about Him.
So all I can say, even today, through the hurt and the pain, through the valleys and the tunnels, through the storm and the tears… Here I am Lord, use me.
And today, I say again, I will never give up… I will never let Him go.
There is a light at the end of the tunnel, and even if I find out that the light I see is just a train coming my way, I will keep going because that train is definitely coming from somewhere.
And I will keep smiling through it all… when I have nothing left, I still have my smile and if He can use that, then I will keep SMILING
I have so much to be thankful for. I have amazing friends (too many to mention, but you know who you are), the most amazing family and I am talented (a very fast learner;)), and there’s still so much I can do.
He is not done with me yet!
So I choose to still trust Him… I choose to still praise Him… I choose to still love Him… and I choose to smile… no matter what!
“I dedicate this to the Late Sam Mpande, who will always be remembered and all the members of the Joshua Generation Band form Calvary Family Church, Lilongwe-Malawi.
And also to Lilongwe Pentecostal Church Choir, my family. I love you all so much and I believe we shall dance together again this side of heaven. Be blessed.”