26 Years ago today, my younger brother died in a road accident. He’d have been 35 now, probably married with kids of his own and a life full of adventure and daring. He was lively and a lot of fun to be around.
His best friend suffered from a form of Brittle Bone syndrome, but that didn’t slow him down. Robin always wanted to be around Carl and I hope Carl wante to be round him!
One year I broke my arm in scouts and had to spend a week in the local hospital so they could stabilise it. Carl was in for a routine op on his legs, to strengthen the bones and extend them. He had his bed moved s it was next to mine. It was cool. We had a TV with a video casette player of “Flash Gordon”, a movi I had never wanted to see, but after five days of it morning to night I could recite the lines, and Queen songs were starting to grow on me.
Ispent a lot of time chatting with Carl that week. His brother came for visiting, as did mine, and Robin and Carl would go off whicle Neil and I would sit and chat. We’d been friends at primary school, but had drifted apart a bit – my fault: I’m terrible at keeping in touch with people I know. Neil told me about Carl’s dream. Radio Presenter. I listened and the more I did, the more I felt God had inspired this. He accepted his disability and wanted to advance despite it.
Robin had the same attitude. No physical ability to hold him back, just a habit of doing things withouit thought of the consequences. February 20th 1985 he went out of our home on his bicycle and never came home. He was excited and itching to get to his destination to play – as all 9 or 10 year old boys do. He went, played HARD – the only he knew and headed off home to play Chuckie-Egg on the new BBC Micro Computer.
Part way home he changed his mind. He’d turn off and go to wave at the lorries driving under the bridge of the A1 Dual Carriageway just across the housing estate. “I’ll cut through here” he would have thought, then pulled violently out towards his new destination…
The driver never stood a chance. Robin’s reflexes were focussed on the next play and how best to get to it, not traffic.
He pulled out, struck the corner of the driver’s car and slid up the bonnet, falling back down to the street, landing on his skull and losing consciousness.
An hour later I got a call at a friend’s house. Robin’s had an accident. He may need to go to hospital.
I ran home – half the time it normally took – and pushed open the gate to be welcomed by his badly mangled little bike.
Very badly mangled… blood on the frame… Robin’s Blood.
“It should have been you” First thought in my brain.
“IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN YOU”
The self accusation went on for weeks.
The funeral came and went, the rest of the world moved on, and I sat with my thoughts every day on his grave. “It should have been me. I’m Sorry.”
He didn’t get up, of course. I didn’t know about Spiritual Authority back then.
I lived with the guilt for years until God brought the right person into my life. Jim is the most Brash and abrasive person if you don’t know him, but there’s an amazing passion or God in his heart. He helped e to move past the death and see it from a more than just human perspective, from a REAL perspective.
He told me to give it to God and wait. So I did. Eventually I began to get impatient, I wanted healing and a serious explanation, Wait.
after days of waiting I was distraught. My brother was dead and I was still weak. I waited on God and I just sat there. I got angry. I got angry with Robin for dying, Myself for not being there, mum and dad for letting him go out, the driver – who never had a chance of preventing the accident – the ambulances for not getting there faster, the police for being so TALL when they told us, then finally at GOD.
I ripped into Him with every ounce of venom I had. Once I’d vented He said “Are you done now?”
“Will you let Me heal you now?”
I feel the loss of Robin every day. It shaped my life from that moment forwards, just as much as my dad’s illness, my mum’s stroke, my wife’s ongoing battle with sickness. It’s all there, ut I rise up on wings like an eagle. I have been given strength from God and I can cope because of it.
I will wait on the Lord to renew my Strength. He will lift me jup and place me where I’m made to be.