I’ve known the Lord since I was 11 or 12. I’ve been a member of PaulAnn since I was in children’s ministry, but that didn’t really mean that I was actively pursuing a relationship with the Lord or living my life for the Lord. In 2016, I got a call that changed mine and my family’s life forever. My younger brother was on his way to San Angelo from Abilene to meet our family for lunch when he was hit head on by a truck. He died instantly. We were celebrating his 21st birthday that day…he was just 5 days shy of turning 21. Growing up in the church you always hear things like “God is alive” and “He has your whole life planned”. To me this was very comforting, but at times hard to understand. I felt so close to the Lord during this time. When you lose a sibling you kind of lose your parents too. Us siblings are considered the “forgotten grievers”. I had a wonderful support system in my closest friends and people that I worked with. But I had never…ever…felt as close to the Lord as I did during this time of grief. My relationship with the Lord truly grew and I felt peace, and completely full. I found comfort in knowing that God knew the day he put my brother on earth the exact moment he would take him back. In those moments, I knew the Lord had a plan, and I knew He was surely alive and a very powerful God. I praised Him through it and found beauty in the loss of my brother. Through my relationship with the Lord, I watched my mom and my step dad turn their hearts to the Lord. I had never seen them pursue the Lord before. And that was an amazing encounter.