Friday, August 18, 2006

A Memory of Tim

Today is my birthday (Sandy) and I'm remembering all the thoughtful things Tim did in his quiet way. On every special occasion he would give us a card and include some encouraging words. My favorite birthday card from Tim hangs on a small bulletin board on the wall right next to my bed and is the first thing I see in the morning. I keep encouraging thoughts on 3X5 cards on it to remind me of God's promises each morning and areas that I'm trying to grow in. I also keep my favorite notes and cards from Sal and the kids. Tim gave me this card for my birthday two years ago. I scanned the picture on the front, but couldn't figure out how to paste it onto the blog. On the front is a black and white photo of an adult hand holding a small child's hand. Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting Above the picture are the words: "For as long as I can remember," and below it says: "you've always been there for me." And inside it says "Happy Birthday to a Wonderful Mother". Was I not there enough for him these past two years? Did I listen too much to those voices telling me to let go too soon? How did I not see the severity of the battle he was fighting? I trusted God and prayed for him daily. I shared all the things God had taught me through the years that I battled depression. I had every confidence that God loved Tim and would bring him through in His time. I shared scripture and books that had ministered to me and he always thanked me and encouraged me to speak into his life whenever I had something to share. I had experienced God miraculously speaking into my thoughts when I had concluded that ending Todd's and my life was the solution to the difficulties that my husband and 3 other kids (at the time) lived with on a daily basis. If God could intervene in my life in such a dramatic way and show me how deceived I had been in thinking that my plan was a "solution", surely He could intervene with Tim. I had experienced God's loving care in so many areas in Sal's and my lives, surely God was lovingly directing all the events in Tim's life. God had a different plan for Tim and for us and His promise is to work it for our good. I've experienced God's goodness so many times after trials and difficulties. I can only conclude that God allowed this to happen and will use it to fulfill His sovereign plan in each of the groups who knew Tim and will work it to our family's good. There is the possibly that God was very merciful to Tim and to us by not allowing Tim to battle Bipolar for the rest of his days on earth or for his family to watch two members deal with severe mental illness.
Tim would always include a personal note in his cards to me which I treasure so much, particularly now. Here's what he shared in this card two years ago.

Your birthday provides an opportunity to thank and encourage you, to let you knowthat each year I am more blessed and challenged by your life.

This year I have seen you grow in humility-admitting your own shortcomings as you share counsel.

I have seen you grow in patience- and we daily provide you many opportunities for growth in this!

I have seen you grow in wisdom- as you seek to practically apply the truth of thegospel.

Thanks for sharing your time, wisdom, and love with me this year! As I return to Philly, I hope to grow and learn from the way you take time to be still before the Lord.

Thanks for sharing your time, wisdom, and love with me this year! As I return to Philly, I hope to grow and learn from the way you take time to be still before the Lord.

Each of our kids is so unique and such a blessing from the Lord. Tim was not the result of our parenting, but of God's creating. We used to look at each other and say, "where did this kid come from?" Our other kids had our sin natures and similar struggles that we had growing up. Tim was far beyond us in godliness and we learned from him. I'm reminded of I Cor. 4:7b "What do you have that you did not receive?" Tim didn't boast. I don't think he realized what he had received was any different from the rest of us. God used the gifts He had given Tim to be an example to many of us of what a godly life looked like. We were truly blessed to have Tim for 26 years. God chose to bless us with him and I will be forever greatful!

Blessed be Your name
On the road marked with suffering
Though there's pain in the offering
Blessed be Your name

You give and take away,
You give and take away
My heart will choose to say,
"Lord, blessed be Your name!"

7 Comments:

Blogger m b redmond said...

Man, this site is raw. Full of heart's blood and eye's tears. Full of glory, overflowing with grace.

4:39 AM  
Anonymous Steve said...

Salvador, Sandy, family, and Shelah:

I just wanted to write to you all to let you know that I think and pray for your family often. I also think about Tim often. Even though Tim's not with us anymore, he still is an encouragement to me. When I think about topics that he and I had discussed in the past, or the simple elements of character that Tim had--it still spurs me on in Christ. As I seek to grow as a School Counselor myself--in a Baltimore County elementary school--I strive to allow Christ to penetrate my work. Sometimes it's easy to get caught up in the "worlds way of doing things" or in going with the flow and being overcome by the "fear of man". But, the Lord continues to provide so much grace as he directs my path and does with me as he pleases. As hard as it gets, I see the Lord's goodness in all of it. The reason that I brought this up to you is because these are some of the very things that I was able to discuss with Tim. He always was a great listener, and of all of the things that we were able to relate on, counseling and serving the Lord in it was a big one.
I'll continue to pray for your family and those that knew Tim. Please be aware that many people continue to pray for you and your family and like I, continue to be encouraged by how Tim served the Lord here on earth.
Steve Capecci

Steve Capecci
Professional School Counselor
Dogwood Elementary School
410-887-6804

8:50 PM  
Blogger Angela Chen said...

I was reminded of you all today, and I thought I would check the site to see if you had updated. I wanted to write earlier, but it was so painful, and I didn't seem to have the words. So this is a start. Tim's picture on this site always reminds me of how he used to do coffee at 8am on campus early in the morning. Couple times, I would be late, and running to the the table - afraid of reproach. Tim would always have that warm, generous smile. He, among many others at Campus Crusade and Chesapeake reminded me of having HOPE in Christ, especially during some of my most discouraging times in my faith. One friend used to pester Tim with questions just to tease him, and to see if she could get a different reaction out of him, but Tim would always smile and respond graciously. I never forgot how kind he was to everyone, especially people from different countries. I know they didn't always feel welcomed by everyone, but I remember Tim could talk to most anyone. I don't know how you manage the questions and the pain, but I hope that you all feel the prayers of your extended family in Christ. When I pray, I see God's very large hands holding you, and I know that he has us all. May God give you JOY, even in and through the tears.

3:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This thanksgiving im thankful for the time Tim and i had together while it lasted.... And for the memories i take with me.

8:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tim IS sorely missed...

May 11, 2007 @5:33 PM

2:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

At moments like this in the day, I always wanted to hold the time back. But I can't, for a year has gone by.
Tim IS sorely missed.

May 11, 2007 6:01 PM

3:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi. I just found this Blog today. I’m very happy that someone is doing something like this. I used to go to camp at Beachmont and Tim was my senior counselor for two years. It still brings tears to my eyes when I think about him. Keep up the good work on this blog and I promise to come here everyday and to pray for you and Tim’s family. I have to admit one thing that I haven’t told any one, I used to have a crush on Tim. Yes, I know, I’m not even a teenager and Tim was in his twenty’s. I know that someday, we will all be in heaven and see Tim again, and rejoice with him and God.

May God bless you and Keep you.

~Christa

7:07 PM  

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