Kip, Angie, Noah and Lily

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Valentine's Day! It's all about the HEART!....

Hogan's Heart was always the focus.
Hogan's Monitor

We watched this monitor every day. We began watching it when Hogan took his first breath and watched it until he took his last. I believe God was teaching us that it's our Heart that needs to be watched and guarded every day.

Above all else, guard your HEART, for it affects everthing you do. Proverbs 4:23

Wow, it's been a while since I blogged. I don't know why I haven't been keeping everyone up to date with our life. It might be because I have been a little depressed. It might have been because my heart just wasn't in it.

You can't help but know what the next Holiday it is.... if you walk through any local store, if you watch any television or get online for any amount of time.. you are reminded to remember that special someone on Valentine's Day! You can even get a pizza in the shape of a heart this year! It's because of these hearts that I wanted to blog tonight. It reminded me of the importance of your heart.

Hogan's entire life was about us focusing on his heart. Dr. Roesmond took extra time looking at Hogan's heart in our first visit. Hogan's heart had a hole in it. When Hogan passed away ironically, he left a hole in ours too. It was a different kind of hole. It was that secret chamber inside your heart that opens up with the birth of your first child. It is that other chamber that opens and allows a parent to love their second child when you never thought you could love another child like the first born. It was the next chamber that opened when you have your next child and just when you think to yourself, I can't love any child more or equal to the third.... bam! God allows this mysterious thing to happen, another chamber opens. I believe that God is showing us as parents that in the same way we can love one child, then two, then three.... that He can love us the same way. God loves me and he loves you too. We can't count how many of these secret chambers that rest inside God's heart. It is that same chamber that creates a vacuum when a child leaves early. There is more pain and heartache in that hidden chamber when a child dies that is equal to the excitement when that child arrives when that chamber is opened. I believe that hidden chamber that has a "hole"can only be filled by God.

I have been praying that God would allow me to help others. I want to ask you to pray for me too. I want to help other parents that are facing a decision about the birth of a child. I don't want to make the choice for them but I do want to be able to tell Hogan's story. Angie and I spoke at a Sunday School class at Hebron Baptist in Duluth, Ga a couple of months ago. It was our first time telling a group about our experience. I really feel like I let God down that morning. I got emotional and with that... I got flustered and lost focus. It was a great learning lesson for me. If I would have kept focus on the point... like I discussed in my first few blogs... then we would have done much better. Actually, I would have done better! My wife did awesome. She is an amazing woman. It was hard enough for me to experience Hogan's journey but I can't imagine Angie's feelings. My heart goes our to all of the women that stumble onto this blog that have had children and experienced a loss of a child. I have an opportunity to speak at a Church service in a few weeks and I would appreciate your prayers. I pray that Hogan's story might change the heart of someone in that service or that the message would remind parents to hug their children a little more often!

So, why am I writing this blog tonight??? I have no idea other than the fact that God has put it on my heart. I feel that on Valentine's Day, where the world has commercialized another day, that we should take the time to search our Heart.

Follow my advice, my son; always treasure my commands. Obey them and live! Guard my teachings as your most precious possession. Tie them on your fingers as a reminder. Write them deep in your HEART. Proverbs 7:1-3 NLT

I am so thankful every day for being able to have good health. I am so thankful for the blessing of a wife and two amazing children asleep in the other room. I am also thankful for the days we got to share with Hogan. Every day in that NICU with Hogan was such a blessing. It isn't ever too late for anyone. If you have a child or children and for some reason there is an issue between yourself and them.... I hope that you pick up the phone or drive to let your child or children know how much you love them on Valentine's Day. There is no excuse.

We are so thankful for your continued prayers for us. We can't wait to see Hogan in Heaven one day but we believe God has left us here for a reason. Enjoy every day and make memories every day. Every day is a blessing and every breath shouldn't be taken for granted. Happy Valentine's Day to you!

In His Love,