It’s amazing the impact that one person’s reckless decision can have on others.
All week long, I’ve been looking forward to my son Caleb’s football team’s match-up against the North Winnipeg Nomads. His midget-level team, the Transcona Nationals, has been undefeated so far this season, currently 5-0 in the standings. And last night, they were set to face off against one of the best teams in the league. It promised to be a great night of football.
About 20 minutes after Caleb drove away from Beausejour with three of his team-mates – Phil, Martin and Logan – we got a phone call at the house. The kind of phone call that no parent wants to get. Ever.
There was an accident.
We immediately left my mother-in-law at home with my other three kids with dinner still on the stove. My wife and I drove out to the accident site.
Apparently, as the boys had been driving along the highway, a mini-van on one of the side streets at a stop sign pulled out in front of them, and although my son tried to brake, they T-boned the van, sending it spinning into the ditch on the other side of the highway.
As we stepped into the accident scene, it was overwhelming and there was so much to drink in. There were fire trucks, ambulances, police cars and emergency responders everywhere. Paramedics were attending to the boys and the driver of the other vehicle. My wife and I ran to our son and hugged him.
One of our friends from church was there – she had been driving the highway and came upon the scene and stopped to help. We were very thankful for that! Another one of the players from the boys’ team was there with his mom – they had been on their way to the game when they saw the accident and stopped as well.
Caleb and Martin had been in the front seats and the airbags went off, so they were in better shape than the other two. Phil had a concussion and one side of his body was bruised and his face was swollen, and Logan had a broken nose and had to get stitches – there was blood everywhere. The paramedics said that they were shocked that the boys walked out of the car and that their injuries weren’t worse than they were. Thank God and His angels for that!
All four guys were put into ambulances to be checked out at a hospital. Because Logan was in the worst condition, he left first and was taken to a hospital in the nearby town of St. Anne’s. However, there was no more room in that hospital for the other boys, so they were all taken to the children’s hospital in Winnipeg. Liza rode along in the ambulance with Caleb, so I followed behind in the van.
As I was driving to the hospital, I got very emotional as I reflected upon the fact that my son could have been killed in that car crash. It made me think of this Bible verse:
“LORD, remind me how brief my time on earth will be. Remind me that my days are numbered, and that my life is fleeing away.” (Psalm 39:4, NLT).
I started thinking about an old song by Wes King called “Life is Precious.”
Sometimes I drive too fast, Sometimes I risk it all
Sometimes I’m reckless, And act like I’m made of steel
But I’m just flesh and bones, A product of the Fall
Still I have purpose, And this I know to be real
Life is precious, life is sweet, like the earth beneath my feet
Though I know I’m passing through, I know I belong to You
Life is precious, life is sweet, And this truth makes it complete
Knowing Jesus did for me, Life is precious, Life is precious, life is sweet
Anyway, one of the first phone calls I made was to our church’s prayer team to get them praying for the boys. Then we called the boys’ coaches and let them know that they wouldn’t be able to make it to the game. We found out after the fact that when their football team met in the locker room before the game, they were all very emotional and a lot of them were crying. One of the guys brought out a Bible, and another one led the team in praying for our guys. I thought that was pretty awesome.
We got updates on the game throughout the night while we were in the waiting room at the hospital. Unfortunately, our boys’ team lost the game against the Nomads – their first loss of the season. I am sure part of the reason was because of the fact that four of their best players (I don’t think I’m biased) were out of commission, not to mention the team’s emotional state as well.
The team’s quarterback Adam came to the hospital as soon as the game was over to check on the boys and see how they were doing. When we finally got out of the hospital, it was almost midnight, and all of the guys were starving (so was I!), so we stopped at McDonald’s for burgers.
I’m thankful to the Lord for the reminder that life is precious.
I want to challenge you today:Take the time to tell someone you love them. Hug somebody you care about. Forgive anyone who’s done something wrong to you. Life is fleeing away, and it’s too short to waste being angry or bitter. Don’t drive too fast or reckless – you’re not made of steel! Be good to everyone you meet. Live life to the fullest. Love deeply.