…, but God.

FullSizeRender (8)My husband is not dead, but on February 8th, 2015 he died.  He suffered full cardiac arrest in our garage and was dead.  Through many people I will never be able to thank enough, used as God’s tools on earth, he was saved.

I felt as though my heart stopped with his.  There was so much left undone and unsaid and an eternity to be separated. He was not ready.  I was not ready.  We were (are!) young… He was only 42 and me 43.  We were launching the last of the kids to college and our lives were about to really be getting started.   I did not want to do life alone.

Certainly, I’ll never be able to articulate all I felt in those moments and hours that followed.  Here I sit a year later and my heart is pressing deeply in my chest like it was just this minute it all happened.  Please do not misunderstand – the last year has been a series of miracle after miracle in our lives where we have constantly felt the hand of God gripping us ever so tightly.  Yet, I will never get over the minute I had nothing…. but God.

My husband’s heart quit … but God.

Questions about how long he was without oxygen …  but God.

Family and children to contact … but God.

“Shock him again” …. but God.

“They call this type of blockage the widow maker” … but God.

“Prepare your family to make decisions, all signs show your husband is brain-dead” … but God.

“Everything will be different now, he’ll need special care” … but God.


I sit typing with tears flowing down my cheeks, because GOD y’all.  In the moments when I felt like I had nothing, I had God.  When the trivial of the world was of no consequence, because the full weight of my world bore down on me, I had God.  The peace that passed all understanding became a reality in my life.

I have heard it said so many times, yet in my darkest I knew exactly where my strength came from –  my strength came from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth.

Today I challenge you.  Fill in your blank:

_______________________, but God.

My husband died in my arms, but God.   (He lived and is perfectly normal.)

My husband didn’t know Jesus, but God.   (He is saved now and will spend eternity with Jesus.)

Maybe you don’t have such a happy ending;

I lost my child, but God.

I feel lonely all the time, but God.

I am battling a silent eating disorder, but God.

I am an addict, but God.

My husband had an affair and left me, but God.

Whatever your blank, BUT GOD.  He is the constant and He does desire goodness for you. Turn to Him and find your comfort, your strength, your will to go on and your life’s way. When you feel you have nowhere to turn, pray to God.  He hears your prayers and wants to answer you, to hold you in his grip.  Pray like life depends on it and pray believing God is going to work.

Inserted below is of my daughter’s eloquent Facebook post on February 8, 2015, the day of the cardiac arrest.  I keep it taped to my computer monitor so I can stay encouraged by her words so wise beyond her years.


“I pray because I believe in the power of prayer. I pray because I have no doubt that God has and will answer my prayers.  I pray because God has allowed us to see another day.  No matter what others may think or say, I will pray.” ~Johna Clarke Ricks


Whatever your blank, y’all. WHATEVER. YOUR. BLANK. God is constant and desires deeply to talk to you about it.  Stay in his presence in prayer and he will bless your life.  The blessings may not be exactly what you asked, but they will be exactly what God knows you need to live a victorious life in Him.

The day my husband died, but God.   When I had nothing, God gave me everything I needed.  Then blessed exceedingly and abundantly more than I could ever hope or imagine. [A miracle story for another post!]

Just God.  I stand in awe.

In His grip, Ashlee

2 thoughts on “…, but God.

  1. So eloquently written, Ashlee!! I loved it! Your story is one of those standing stones in my life. If ever I begin to doubt God’s goodness or his love for me, I remember watching him work in your and Gerald’s life in such an amazing way. God is certainly a game changer!! Love you, chick! (Although I am not so sure we can say Gerald is perfectly normal… 😉


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