One Year Later – Linda Allard

I had a thought a few weeks ago that I would ask Linda & Abbie Allard to be guest bloggers today and tomorrow. For many of you familiar with this family you will know that March 3, 2007 Andrew Allard went home to be with Jesus at the age of 13. It has been very encouraging to see this family go through something as horrific as losing a son and a brother. One year later I still miss the kid like crazy but I know that he is having one heck of a time asking Jesus some of the craziest questions imaginable (since he can’t hang out in my office and ask me any more…)

Without writing anything more, here is Linda.

It was one year ago today (wow—it only seems like one very loooooong day) when the doctors came to us after reading the results of yet another test, to let us know that we had to “let go” of Andrew. We had spent 3 days and nights praying for Andrew’s healing and on March 3, at 3:33 p.m., I looked up at the clock on the wall in his room and knew it was time to “let go”. Although it would not be until the following morning that the doctors would declare him legally dead (their terms—we know that Andrew is more alive than us), we knew that the time had come.

Yet how do we “let go”? We have spent the last year trying to figure that out and here it is, one year later, and I think we might be getting it! There is a song by David Crowder that has recently really ministered to us….it is called “Never Let Go” and the part of the words go something like this…

andrew_allard.jpgWhen clouds brought rain
And disaster came
Oh my soul, oh my soul

When waters rose
And hope had flown
Oh my soul, oh my soul

Ever faithful, ever true,
You are known, You never let go.
You never let go, You never let go
You never let go, You never let go.

Oh my soul overflows
Oh what love, oh what love
Oh my soul fills with hope
Perfect love that never lets go.

In joy and pain
In sun and rain
You’re the same
You never let go.

I remember shortly after Andrew’s service, somebody had said something to the effect “just wait—-it doesn’t get any better—in fact, it will get worse” and I thought to myself “WHAT? You mean that the Lord Who has been lovingly carrying me through the worse nightmare of my life during the past several weeks is all of a sudden going to just drop me flat and let me go?” I knew that there was NO WAY that the Lord would ever do this to me.

Why? Because as a Mom, I know that I would never do this to one of my children. I would never faithfully pour out my love and affection to my children over and over and then all of a sudden one day just “let go of them” and walk away. As the song says, the Lord never lets go; Our Heavenly Father is ever faithful and ever true.

When it comes to “letting go”, we will never be able to “let go” of Andrew and I don’t think the Lord expects that of us. Andrew is and always will be a huge part of us and our very DNA is in Andrew. In the realm of the Spirit, a part of us is sitting in Heavenly places with Andrew, hanging out with his family and friends who have gone before him and of course, the very One Who died so that Andrew could live—-our Lord Jesus Christ. We will never let go of the wonderful memories, the amazing love and the overwhelming joy that Andrew brought to us as a family. We will never let go of the funny and goofy stories as well as the incredible stories to come of how this 13 year old came to impact our lives as well as the lives of so many others.

We will, however, continue to “let go” of anything that keeps us from remaining in the realm of the Spirit—the place that Andrew dwells presently—and that is the pain, the sorrow, the hurt feelings, the disappointments, the lost dreams.

As I was singing this song “Never Let Go” just the other day, I spoke the words “Andrew, I will never let go of you” in my heart and just as I finished, I looked up into the sky where I saw many strands of light coming through the clouds. Together they formed what looked like the neck of a guitar. And I had to smile and cry at the same time—-because I felt like the Lord was showing me how totally limited my mind is—-I picture Andrew playing some fancy expensive guitar in Heaven (the kind of guitar he would drool over and could never afford) and yet I sense that Andrew’s guitar is made of “strands of glory” and is not from this earth. It is far better than my mind can conceive.

I don’t think there will ever be a day when I don’t think about Andrew a lot (he truly made an impression on everyone he met). However, as a Mom, I know that the greatest joy the Lord can bring is the assurance that your child is faithfully serving the Lord—-and there is no question that today Andrew is now fulfilling my heart’s desire.

Happy “One Year” Birthday, Andrew, as you celebrate your new life with your Father. We love you and will never let go of you as we long for the day when we can see your huge smile once again face to face. Thank you for bringing to our family a JOY that we will never let go of—-YOU.

Always, Your Mom
Tomorrow Andrew’s sister, Abbie, will share.

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7 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Holly Fenn on August 7, 2009 at 2:57 am

    Thank You Linda for directing me to this posting.

    You live as a daughter of Christ. Your faith is extraordinary & speaks loudly to any of us who are caught up in the ways of the world.
    . My faith in Him has never wavered. I’ve had many events happen in my lifetime and have been chronically ill for the past 3 years. -Still, my faith never wavered. . . until now. It is until recently I questioned the Lord. Shockingly, with much guidance, I learned that inside my soul, i wonder “Why did this have to happen? And why now? I was just starting to get my life back . . . BE with my family.
    So, for the first confusing time, I “wrestle” myself. Do I dare question our Creator? Who am I to do so?
    I thank you for being open and sharing your thoughts. . . from one Mamma to another: I know we’ll get through the loss of our children. Your smile and writings are quite inspiring, as you make it known that we DO have a decision on our recovery. I look forward to the moment I am once again able to Worship freely with much joy. For then I will able to let go of Dalton & Let Him take over. He did his part here on earth. It brings me peace to know that he is worshiping the Lord, possibly right now!

    With Love, *some verses bellow I copied from another persons page!
    Holly

    I absolutely love the lyrics in this song that was posted
    Maybe since my life was changed
    Long before these rainy days
    It’s never really ever crossed my mind
    To turn my back on you oh Lord
    My only shelter from the storms
    But instead I draw closer through these times
    So I pray
    Bring me joy, bring me peace
    Bring the chance to be free
    Bring me anything that brings You glory
    And I know There’ll be days
    When this life brings me pain
    But if that’s what it takes to praise You
    Jesus Bring the Rain

    Reply

  2. Posted by Sue Beltz on March 5, 2008 at 8:46 pm

    Hey Linda, Chip, and Abbie,
    I’ve read both of the blogs and can only see the happiness and joy that was so much a part of Andrew now reflected in the words you shared. His Spirit lives on in your hearts and not only fills you, but spills over to all who have been touched by his life. Andrew was so accepting of all and as willing to spend time with those younger and older than him as he was those his own age. Your family continues to encourage all; even though we all miss Andrew, you can see the Spirit within him so alive in each of you and inspiring to so many others who have been brought into God’s kingdom. We love and miss all of you.
    Sue

    Reply

  3. Posted by Kathy Johnson on March 5, 2008 at 5:52 pm

    Linda and Chip,
    It is hard to believe its the one year anniversary already. Our family is so thankful for having the privilege to have known Andrew. when I think of his quirky smile and his loving nature it makes me smile. As I told Abbie whenever we listen to Reliant K’s “Give until theres nothing left to give” we think of Andrew. He was a true Giver.
    We love you all and think of you often. Kathy

    Reply

  4. Posted by Sondra on March 5, 2008 at 11:06 am

    I love you! Thanks for sharing, your testimony strengthens me in hard times.

    Reply

  5. Posted by Brenda on March 4, 2008 at 9:04 pm

    Linda, I sent you this song, and daily as I listen to it I am reminded of you… I have heard people say how amazed they are with your faith, strength and joy, thinking they could never be that way… the first part of this song is you..you havent let this sad, hard circumstance change who you are in a negative way, you have allowed it to let God shine in you through it! You show hope to others in ALL things!
    The second part of this song is so you too – “never crossed your mind to turn your back on God – NEVER!!” He has helped carry you through, and continues to. So, the third part of this song is what i sing for you…Bring Linda joy, continue to bring her peace. Thank you for setting her free, and bringing you glory, Lord.
    The last part is what you have shown us… what is a little rain in comparison to what He has done for us? He is greater than our pain! When I was praying for you the other night, I was reminded how you can understand how hard it must have been for God to watch His only son die for us…. you know that pain. You are now at the other point of witnessing what Andrew’s life accomplished for so many as well. You shared how God wouldnt just allow this and then leave us hanging, that is the hope we all need to remember and hold on to. Thank you for being such a strong daughter of Gods, and for allowing so many to learn from your steadfast walk. You truely are an inspiration to many!!
    With much love,
    Brenda

    I can count a million times
    People asking me how I
    Can praise You with all that I’ve gone through
    The question just amazes me
    Can circumstances possibly
    Change who I forever am in You

    Maybe since my life was changed
    Long before these rainy days
    It’s never really ever crossed my mind
    To turn my back on you oh Lord
    My only shelter from the storms
    But instead I draw closer through these times

    So I pray
    Bring me joy, bring me peace
    Bring the chance to be free
    Bring me anything that brings You glory
    And I know There’ll be days
    When this life brings me pain
    But if that’s what it takes to praise You
    Jesus Bring the Rain

    I am Yours regardless of
    The clouds that may loom above
    Because You are much greater than my pain
    You who made a way for me
    By suffering Your destiny
    So tell me what’s a little rain

    Chorus

    Holy, Holy, Holy
    Holy, Holy, Holy
    Is the Lord God Almighty
    Is the Lord God Almighty (repeat

    Reply

  6. Hey Mrs. Allard

    I definitely know what you mean when you say letting go of the bad things like sorrow, hurtfulness and pain, and keeping all good things like memories and smiles, but i think i have finally been able to let go some of that. But you will always have some tough times that you need to overcome, and when you get into those tough situations you need to just think of all the memories and fun you have had with Andrew. It seems whenever i am down and thinking of Andrew i just turn to my picture board of famous memories and that always seems to put a smile on my face, every time. So whenever you have times of pain and sorrow, just turn to your photos of Andrew and remember those memories. If that doesn’t seem to help then just remember that the lord is our number one comforter.

    Reply

  7. Posted by Margaret and Jeff on March 4, 2008 at 3:32 pm

    Linda-all I can say is you are truly inspiring to me. I am sure I am not the only one. I see your strength, your joy, your hope in the face of the biggest loss a mom can endure, and I know that I,too, could survive also if presented with the same circumstance. Thank you so much for sharing. I will never stop missing and loving Andrew, but will continue to draw strength and peace from the eternal rewards that have come from his “death”. I can look beyond the pain and see the joy that God gives in spite of that pain. Thanks for being willing to share your heart with all of us. Love, Margaret

    Reply

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