February 2018

It was supposed to be a nice family vacation. We had just begun our two-week stop in Scotland after serving the last two years in Togo, West Africa, when it happened. A semi flew around the corner and hit our camper head on.

We later learned that the driver had run a few other cars off the road just before hitting us. I was driving, my 22-year-old son Caleb was in the passenger seat, my husband Eric was napping in the back, and our sons Michael and Daniel were sitting behind the cab. 

After the impact, Caleb was pinned for over an hour, and my husband and I were also trapped. It was only by the grace of God any of us lived.

A helicopter took us to the city of Inverness where we learned that bones and teeth were shattered, faces were cut, and bodies were rattled and bruised. We received stitches, gluing, X-rays, crutches and bandages—Caleb spent days in the hospital and needed emergency surgery.

Meanwhile, the camper we had intended to call home during our stay, was totaled. Almost everything that we had carefully selected to take back with us to the States—computers, photos, important papers, clothes, hygiene items and food—was destroyed. We suddenly found ourselves injured, disoriented and having no idea what to do next.

However, we serve an amazing God. As news of our accident spread, people we’d never met, in an area we’d never visited before, began offering to help. We received meals, rides to the hospital, laundry services and most importantly, prayer. 

A kind doctor and his wife took us in, giving us space to rest and heal as a family while we waited for Caleb’s condition to improve. 

Then, to add to the stress, we learned that Eric’s identity had been stolen. As if we hadn’t done enough paperwork filing police reports and insurance claims and medical forms—now we were on the phone for hours with banks trying to make sense of a wild shopping spree that happened somewhere in Grand Rapids, on our dime. We were horrified to learn the thief had changed all our computer codes and left us with quite a mess to try and undo.

And so, we worked and we waited. We waited for our bodies to stop aching, waited for our bruises to disappear, waited for the swelling to leave our faces, hands, knees and backs. Waited to see family and friends and loved ones we had long anticipated reuniting with. Waited to be done living out of suitcases and get back to “normal” living. Worked on getting Caleb better. Worked on replacing and repairing what we could of our things. Worked on fixing the mess that other people’s poor choices had made of our lives.

But as we watched these events unfold, we continued to see God’s provision. We were constantly amazed at how the body of Christ is a family we have around the world, even when we’ve never previously met. We were amazed at how many people prayed for us and encouraged us through practical acts of service for our family.

We are home now and in some ways still recovering from the accident and the identity theft. Caleb may need another surgery, but for the most part, we are settling into our life and our routine. 

We are now seeing that—perhaps in part because of our accident—five people we had connected with and witnessed to before we left for Togo, have reached out to us since our return. We look forward to connecting with them again and testifying of God’s goodness to our family and sharing more with them of the lessons of provision and His faithfulness He’s taught us these past few weeks.

Eric and Brenda Kosiorek have served in West Africa for the past two years. They work through ABWE's Project Office at the Hospital of Hope in the city of Mango, Togo, helping with facilities maintenance and keeping the ministry in working order.  

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