Sunday, February 5, 2012

Go Red!

February is American Heart Month. My local high school had a Go Red event on Friday to raise awareness of heart disease. A representative from the American Heart Association asked my brother to come and share a little of his story during halftime of the schools' basketball game. My brother is such an inspiration and encouragement to me and so many others I know. Ever since he was little he has had a heart condition. Growing up my parents explained it to me as a hole in his heart. Its more complex than that, but I'm not a doctor so I'm not going to try and explain it. Basically, he had heart surgery when he was fourteen or fifteen and had to get a pace maker put in. Because of this, he wasn't physically able to continue playing sports at the same level as before. Through it all I have seen him be so strong. I saw him go through so much and even though I'm sure its not always easy, he has an awesome attitude and he has grown to be one of the strongest godly influences in my life today. You can read a little bit from him by going here. I remember back around the time of his surgery I was in sixth grade and one day I was called into the counselor's office at school. She wanted to know how I was dealing with "everything at home." It never crossed my mind to talk to someone about how I felt. I remember being really jealous of my brother sometimes during that time---me and my sister were shipped off to three different houses during the time my parents were with my brother at Mayo Clinic, the day he came home he was surprised with a brand new TV in his room, and one time when he had to be rushed to the hospital I had to spend all day at someone's farm gathering eggs under chickens' butts. Even though I got jealous sometimes I remember just looking at that counselor that day and asking her what in the world she was talking about. It wasn't me going through all that crazy stuff, it was my big brother. I know the counselor was just trying to help, but I walked out of there as fast as I could. I would have collected eggs from chickens' butts every day if I had to. My brother was and is still worth it and he totally deserved that new TV more than I did. =P

On Friday, he shared a short testimony of what he went through and how God has used his heart condition to grow him. I was so proud of him for sharing his faith like that in a place where most people probably didn't know Christ. I love you, Andrew! Keep being a light for Christ! You are such an awesome dude and I'm proud to call you my big brother!

(pictures by my amazing sis-in-law, at Julie Ann Imaging...or here.)

Hope you all had a blessed Sunday! =)

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