I am writing these words on Sunday night at the end of a stressful weekend. On Friday night Vanessa was in an accident when another driver suddenly swerved into her lane and hit her car head-on. It was snowing in Tupelo (a rare occurrence), the roads were slick, and visibility was poor. The person who hit her was driving an SUV. Vanessa was driving a Jetta. The force of the collision smashed the front end and drove the engine down and back toward the firewall. We are thankful tonight for many things . . .

A seat belt that worked.
Airbags that deployed.
The first police officer on the scene attends Mark and Vanessa’s church.
A well-built car that was totaled but protected the driver.
Excellent medical care in the emergency room.
A brother who is also a doctor at the hospital.
The prayers of many people.
No internal organ damage.
Pain medication.
Vanessa’s courage.
Mark’s tenderness.

Vanessa suffered a broken collarbone and a severely sprained ankle. She is very sore and moving slowly. She and Mark have been staying with us this weekend. They have been surrounded with love by the folks from the Church at Trace Crossing. Many people have called to volunteer help in various ways.

Just as I wrote that paragraph, Mark was helping Vanessa get up and hobble across the living room. Yesterday when Mark and I saw the wrecked car, we understood what the police officer meant when he said that most accidents like this end “grimly.”

The weekend started with a crisis and ends with a sense that Vanessa is on the mend. She’ll be recovering for some weeks to come, but we are grateful that what might have been did not happen. And we are reminded of the grace of God and the brevity of life and the preciousness of time spent together.

You can reach the author at ray@keepbelieving.com. Click here to sign up for the free weekly email sermon.