I had written a long wordy testimony, but I just erased it. Bottom line, I found God in a Children’s Hospital watching my 6-year-old daughter battle Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML). 1 day after her diagnosis she became a paraplegic due to a spinal compression. I turned to God in the hospital and haven’t looked back. I always believed in God…but it was for selfish purposes. My daughter passed away on September 16, 2018 - 5 months after she was diagnosed. We had 5 loving intentional months in the hospital. Not even a wheelchair could slow her down. Her afflictions didn’t own her…she wasn’t defined by them. I went to God trying to save my daughter’s life. Instead, He used her life to save mine. I never understood what it meant to Give “it” to God. I learned in the hospital the “it” was my life. We miss our daughter, but God is continuing to use her life to impact and help others. We are so thankful to God for sustaining us through this tragedy. It’s the Hope that Jesus gave to us on that Cross and then the rising 3 days later that allow us get up out of bed in the morning and start our day. We know that her story is not over…and neither is ours. We’ll meet again…but this time there will be no pain. It’s in our pain, suffering and tears that we find God’s love. We are so thankful for His Grace and Love. We share her story so that we can glorify God. We hope that it helps others. This doesn’t mean we are numb to the pain or have our head in the sand. Everyday is painful and hurts…sometimes you don’t want to go on…but God gives us enough to get through it. You can find her story here at CaringBridge. Believe it or not, you can find Hope in my daughter’s battle and story. It saved my life. AC’s Story.
I just viewed the gallery of your beautiful, precious daughter. I wept through every picture.Thank you for sharing your most profound, beyond painful journey with us. I cannot fathom. I can see in her face through the pictures how much she must have inspired, and as you said, still inspires you and your wife. God bless you brother, in Christ Jesus
After reading a testimony like this, its difficult to find words to respond as it impacts us at so many levels. Thank you for choosing to inspire us with your story of God’s faithfulness through one of the the most tragic losses that we can ever experience in life. The ways that God chooses are hard to grasp but I praise God that He has so grasped your heart with His love! May God restore several fold the years of pain and loss with joy incomparable to you and your family! Blessings in Christ. Thank you!
@BH1974 Your testimony is remarkable. God bless you. Somehow your testimony reminds me of our brother Nabeel Qureshi. At first, I was very sad and angry why he was taken despite the whole world was praying for his healing. But I guess God has bigger plans. Dr. Hugh Ross wrote an excellent article about God’s mercy in death (https://www.reasons.org/explore/blogs/todays-new-reason-to-believe/read/todays-new-reason-to-believe/2019/07/22/god-s-mercy-in-death). He explains biblically why the righteous sometimes die and old and also why the wicked sometimes die young and old.
Thank you for your testimony Benji and God bless.
Hey Benji @BH1974,
Thanks so much for sharing.
I read your Caring Bridge posts, looked through the gallery of your sweet family.
I’m truly humbled and appreciative for the way you’ve embraced this journey- so full of hurt and pain- and exchanged it for grace and love.
You’ve inspired us, and I will probably share your story many times. Her life is a blessing to so many- and the testimony you share of His faithfulness spurs the rest of us on in this race- one day we will all be whole and full of joy in the place we belong. With our Savior.
Thanks again, Benji
I can’t tell you how much all of your comforting comments and prayers mean to me. I’m always hesitant to put our story out there, but I’ve learned the best way to glorify God is by sharing how much He has sustained and comforted us through all of this. There are so many things to be thankful for in all of this. There are a lot of “be thankful for the flea(s)” moments in the last year and a half. If you haven’t read The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom, I highly recommend it. When we’re standing in the fire it can be hard to be patient, but we’re not alone. God is there with us and His love works horizontally coming from so many different people and places. If we close our eyes we’ll miss it. Had God told me what was going to happen on the day that my daughter was diagnosed I would have had a heart attack. But, He didn’t…instead He comforted us and protected us…building us up the entire way. This doesn’t mean that there aren’t days where I lay on the floor, my tears creating a puddle…those happen a lot. And, that’s actually where I find God’s Grace and Love the most. In between Hope and despair is endurance…and we’re not alone. I miss my little girl so much. Early on I would have given anything to go and be with her, but now I understand that God has a purpose for me. I hope that in the future I’ll be able to comfort those in their troubles and sufferings as God has comforted (and continues to) me and my family in our sufferings. Her story isn’t finished. Our story isn’t finished. It’s God’s story. Thanks again for all of the prayers!!
Benji, we serve an amazing God whose ways, we often say, are different than ours. You testimony is a blessing in so many way. One huge way is that I’m part of a prayer team at RZIM. If your interested, go to @Interested_in_Prayer. But back to what I was saying, that if I was praying for your salvation, it would be that he’d save your child. That’s the logical way. But He took your child and gave you life. It’s an incredible story. He is a Redeemer who loves you and Anna so much. He redeemed you and Anna.
Thank you for standing up to the truth in such a horrific time. To lose a spouse or a child would be the hardest thing for me in the world. I became a paraplegic 20 years ago in a firefighting accident. When I came out of the fog, I rejoiced that it was not my Nancy or any of our children. Thank you, thank you Benji, for not only enduring the hardship while accepting a new life, but in your willingness to share your story. I pray for your safety as the enemy wants to slam you for being such a brave and godly man.
Thank you all for the kind words and prayers. Tim, I’m definitely going to check out the prayer team…thank you for sharing that with me. I agree with you on God redeeming my little girl and I. I now look back on it and had He healed her, I probably would have kept up my selfish and worldly ways. My wife and I view it that He did heal her, just not in the way the way we thought or wanted at the time (Isaiah 55: 8-9). She’s now in the presence of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ…that’s our ultimate goal…to be there with Him. I realize that death is still the enemy, but because of what He gave up for us on the cross, and His power over death, we know that our story ends in victory. This why we can get out of bed each morning. The days are extra long right now, but it says in Romans 12:12 to “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” God gives us enough each day to make it through.
Thank you all for the prayers.
I just read your testimony and AC’s story-WOW! Read it through a flood of tears. Your words are so encouraging. Thank you so much for sharing.
@BH1974, Thank you so much for sharing your story and telling us about Anna Charles. Her gallery of photos is beautiful - she looks like she truly embodies the joy of the Lord!
Your story gives me hope that regardless of anything we face, the Lord can work through it. It’s so sweet to see how God is opening up doors for her life to impact and help others. I think the many responses you’ve gotten here reveal that is still happening!
I appreciate your vulnerability in saying that you still have moments where you cry. It reminds me that God meets us in our pain, just where we are, every single day.
We’re very grateful that you’ve shared your story with us. It encouraged me today. Thank you. I look forward to seeing how AC’s story continues to unfold!
Thanks to all for the prayers and such kind words of encouragement. Yesterday marked one year since my baby girl danced into the arms of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Everyday has been incredibly challenging since she left us, but God has also given unbelievable peace when we needed it. Believe it or not, there are a lot of times that I’m thankful for the tears (and groans) because it’s during those times where I see the God the most. I know that on the other side of those tears are an amazing joy. We’re told to wait patiently and expectantly for the Lord, but to always be seeking. It’s so true. It’s the seeking that helps to be patient while we wait. But, He will deliver.
I don’t want to go too much into my daughter’s and family’s journey on here (if you’re interested you can go to her site - www.OurTeamAC.com) but yesterday was exactly one year from the day she went to the Lord. Yesterday, one year later, we walked back into the hospital with incredible news for our community of Childhood Cancer families. The company that I work for committed to helping save lives. Here’s an incredible story of how God’s love works AND that He is always working in everything for the good of those who love Him according His purpose for them. He wastes nothing -https://www.ajc.com/lifestyles/health/because-anna-charles/zNat2ochiCu3eb5jOF2oOP/
Sorry for the long rant, but I want people who are suffering and enduring the worst right now to know that there is hope. We know how all of are stories end in all of this suffering…they end in Victory! Don’t lose hope…we have an incredible Heavenly Father who is working for us even when everything feels silent. God bless everyone on here!