Tag Archive | Appointments with Heaven

Fault and Intent

It might’ve been a breakthrough… I don’t know. It’s only been 9 days so I can’t say for sure.

Sobbing last Saturday morning, July 4, I told Robbie that maybe it wasn’t my “fault” Drey died.

I had just finished reading Appointments With Heaven – a book written by Steven Curtis Chapman’s closest friend Reggie Anderson. I don’t remember who recommended the book – if anyone did for that matter. I’m fairly cynical so picking up a book about someone claiming to experience supernatural events isn’t something I’d normally read. But my husband is rock solid, smart and discerning. And if he says Steven Curtis Chapman – who wrote the forward to this book endorsing it – is trustworthy and has a healthy biblical knowledge, then ok. I’ll read it.

The book was good. Not so much because of the supernatural experiences he’d had but because of Anderson’s honesty about the tragedies he’d experienced in his life. He questioned his faith multiple times. His honesty about his anger and doubt about God is what made this book good. Then I neared the end of it and I found myself leaping through the final pages in anticipation and excitement…

The last few chapters of the book addressed the accidental death of Chapman’s young daughter in 2008. Chapman’s son accidentally ran over her when pulling into their driveway. She was running out to ask her big brother to help her reach the monkey bars. Horrible, sickening tragedy. How does a family cope? I was eager to learn how the family responded…

After reading those last few chapters I knew clearly that 17-year-old Will had been behind the wheel of the vehicle that killed little 5-year old Maria. It was his “fault.” But “fault” wasn’t the right word because it was never ever ever his intent for this to happen. Never. In this horrible tragedy, intent – not fault – was all that mattered. Of course no one blamed Will. It was an accident. He was driving carefully. He should not be paralyzed by guilt. He loved Maria so very much.

The Chapman family did an interview with Larry King just a few months after Maria’s death – watch it here. Simply amazing.

It’s only been 9 days since I finished the book. I’m still digesting it, processing it.There are too many layers to this story, this grief, this hope, to adequately and succinctly write about now. All I know is that I was humbled by the question I’m sure God put on my heart… Why had I never applied this logic to my own situation? I never ever ever intended for any of my choices to result in Drey’s suicide. I would have given my life for him. I loved him very much and did all I could to make sure he knew that, too.

So, through sobs, standing in our hallway outside Drey’s room, 2 years 10 months and 26 days after he died, I told Robbie that maybe – just maybe – it’s not my “fault” Drey died.