Yesterday was the first book signing for The Roadway to Heaven. As I anxiously waited for people to arrive, I thought about how I had come full circle.
This time last year I had just closed my store Vintage Charm Decor at the very same location as my book signing. My heart was broken, understandably so when we give up our dream, but I knew that God wanted me with my family more. The decision was easy to make. My family will always come first above all else. And even though the decision came easy, the loss of what I had worked so hard to build was still almost unbearable.
God often calls us to do what something that will cause us pain. We don’t understand it at the time. We rant and cry out to God, begging Him to open up a door that leads us in the direction we want to go. Sometimes He does, but it only takes us longer to end up where He wanted us all along. I’m guilty of trying to take my own paths. Carve my own way through obstacles. Pushing forward, knowing there is a gigantic wall in my way. Never thinking to ask God if that wall is there for a reason. Asking Him if my path has been closed off because I’m supposed to be taking a detour on another one.
I am reminded again of the Joanna Gaines story. She had to give up her dream to also stay home with her children. God promised her that He was leading her on to a better dream, and although it didn’t seem like it at the time, He did. 100 times over. Not only did she reopen that little shop she had to close to stay home with her children, He gave her a multimillion dollar business.
Yesterday, I sat in front of that store that God too had urged me to let go, signing a book that would have never been written had I not listened to Him. God had led me down an alternate path, to end up exactly back to where that path had ended one year before. I don’t know if The Roadway to Heaven will someday be on the New York Bestseller List. But what I do know is that it has already encouraged the hundreds of people who have read it, and I couldn’t ask for anything better than that.
Love & Blessings,
C.C. Hasty Andrews
As we sat in the waiting room at Williamson County Medical Center, I looked back on the years that had lead us there. While playing football during Alex’s sophomore year, he tore his labrum. We also learned that he suffered from hip impingement. We always planned to have this surgery after he graduated high school so that he could continue to play sports. We just didn’t know at that point in time that he would end up having a wreck his senior year that would require multiple surgeries and alter the course of his life forever. There would never be any more sports for Alex.
And here we were, fixing to undertake another surgery that would take at least 6 months to heal. I couldn’t help but think that Alex had just now finally healed from all the other surgeries and hadn’t had any time to just be a normal teenage kid. I didn’t feel good about it, but he is 19-years-old. It is his body and his decision. I was ready to do whatever I needed to do to help him heal from this surgery.
All the way to the hospital Alex was extremely anxious. I knew that something was wrong, but like any other teenager, he would share it only when he was ready. This wasn’t his first time having surgery, but any other surgery he was absolutely ready. This time was different.
As we sat in the waiting room to go back to pre-op, patient after patient was taken back. Still, we waited. Alex grew more and more anxious. Finally, he looked at me and said, “What do you think about just leaving?” I had spent weeks trying to convince him to hold off on surgery and here he was suggesting leaving? I thought he was joking at first. When I realized he was serious, my heart jumped with hope. He explained that he didn’t feel going through with surgery was a good decision. God was telling him not to do it. That was all I needed to hear! We told the nursing staff that Alex had changed his mind and we bailed! We both left feeling like we had lost 100 pounds of weight off our shoulders.
I knew in my heart that this surgery wasn’t a good idea. Everything that had led up to this day had pointed towards not doing it. Scheduling it had been difficult to begin with. We had left message after message for the scheduler and it took weeks before she returned the message. The day before surgery, the surgeon’s office realized they didn’t have the referral from the correct doctor and we spent hours trying to fix it. We finally received the referral only 30 minutes before it was too late. Then, we had to wait while watching patient after patient being taking back for surgery, each time leaving us alone in the waiting area. These hurdles were God giving Alex more time to listen to Him.
I am so proud that I have a son who listens to his heart and what God is telling him. I don’t know what would have happened if Alex had the surgery. But, I know in my heart it was something that God didn’t want us to do, and I am so thankful that Alex listened. I am praying that Alex has the best summer he has ever had this year!
Love & blessings,
When I was a little girl, a woman came by our apartment in the projects of downtown Nashville to invite me to church. She told me about all of the fun things the youth did at church and promised to come get me on the bus every Sunday. And she did. Her name was Lana Banana (although I am sure that wasn’t her real name). I loved going to church where I learned about Jesus and His love for me. It was something to look forward to every week, and she gave me candy every time I walked onto that bus.
A couple of years later, the owner at a furniture store that we broke down in front of told me about Jesus and I told him I went to church on Sunday’s. He gave me a stuffed doll that I cherished and invited me to visit his church. I told him I would, but I was maybe 8 years old and didn’t have a way to get there. It was the first promise I ever remember breaking. It hurt to break that promise and I learned going forward to never again promise something that I couldn’t do. He told me I was special and was going to do great things in life. No one had ever told me this, and I believed him.
A few years later we moved from Nashville to Shelbyville. My great uncle Chuck came to visit and invited me to church with him. He picked me up every single Sunday. He paid for me to go to church camp when I was 13 years old, where I accepted Jesus Christ into my heart.
Why did I share this? Because it was those people who helped lead me to salvation. Not 1 person. Not 1 experience. But several. Lana Banana, the driver of that church bus who came to the roughest projects in Nashville didn’t know that I was ultimately saved. The owner of that furniture store couldn’t have realized how special that doll was to me or the words of life he spoke into me. My uncle Chuck couldn’t realize that by sowing the money to send me to church camp it would ultimately lead me to the cross and salvation.
I’m not sure if I have ever been instrumental in someone’s journey to become saved. I hope that I have been. And I hope that all who read this are reminded that every time you share Jesus with someone, speak words of life and encouragement into someone, or sow financially into ministry, you too may have been one of the people God used to help someone eventually reach salvation, without even knowing it.
Love & blessings,