"But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father." Matthew 24:36 NIV

While this verse talks about the second coming of Christ, according to the Holy Bible, many think of this verse to explain moments and events in one's life. Events that we don't plan for nor wish to experience. Life changes that we don't plan for. Such is today, our first anniversary.

When we think of an anniversary we do so to commemorate a wedding or other happy event. "Remember when we won that championship" or "That was the day of our first date" or some other good memory of a life-changing day.

But, who wants to remember the anniversary of the day they were informed that their health was never going to be better? Who wishes to remember the day their life changed from husband and wife, to caregiver and one in need of care?

The news given to me a year ago today is not what one wanted to hear. Even though my wife knew what the diagnosis was going to be, she could not speak it. When given, the Earth did not crash or cease to be, but it continued it's rotation around the sun.

"Parkinson's Paralysis Agitans." It didn't stop the world, but for a few moments it did stop ours. "What was our life going to look like?" my wife and I both mused.

We already knew what the tremors looked like and how they could make the day difficult. The last few months prior saw the onset of a shuffling gait and from time-to-time rigidity that made movement more difficult. But what about the long-term? How bad or how soon is my life going to change?

As I reflected on the difficulty of the past few months, I began to see the big picture. "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose." Romans 8:28 NIV

Just thirteen months prior I was in the same doctor's office with my wife, who at the time was my girlfriend - I hadn't even proposed marriage, yet. She was there because a few months prior she experienced difficulty walking and scans of her brain showed something on her brain - the doctor wanted to see if it might change in size; expecting something larger. The news was it had disappeared. We knew God was at work.

Then my mind flashed back to the month prior to meeting my wife. I was in my brother-in-law's hospital room, sitting with him as my sister ran home to change clothes, and began to write down a heartfelt letter. In this letter I made a commitment that as I was leaving the failed marriage I was in, that I would go where God wanted to lead me. I didn't have to be married, or have children, but I wanted to fulfill his purpose for me in this world. I asked God to lead me in the words of Ruth 1:16, "Where you go I'll go, Where you stay I'll stay. Your people will be my people. Your God will be my God."

There is a purpose for everything that happens in our lives. This first year has allowed my wife and I to grow deeper in our faith, ask questions about where my health will lead us, and to work towards improving ourselves physically. I am so blessed to be her husband and walk this journey with her. I ask God each night to bless her, watch over her and keep her safe. I thank Him for placing her in my life and for using her to get closer to Him.

This is our first anniversary of living with Parkinson's, not our last. We know that God will use us to help others. He will lead us like he has so many times before. There is a purpose to our lives. We live on His time, not ours.

There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens:
a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8