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The Power of Faith And Prayer

By Joe Joe Wright

On November the 2nd 2015 the lives of Joseph Stokes and his family changed forever. In the blink of an eye he went from happy go lucky teenager and ball player to fighting for his very life. His family went from their everyday mundane choir of getting ready for work to a moment of absolute stark terror. There is nothing short of an apocalyptic event that can bring one to their knees pleading and begging for something like the mere possibility of losing your child.

This little community has experienced this before it is not the first time. However, Joseph played football and it was football season and everyone was a buzzing about our future . Then a huge dose of reality slapped all of  us in the face. The politicians in America were starting their same old rhetoric they let out at every election time, but something about this accident hit home here in Cordele. Oh how precarious life can be no matter how much you teach and instruct your children things happen. It hasn’t been that long ago that three Crisp Teenagers almost met  an unfortunate fate on Hwy 300. Tragedy averted that day,  prayer works. Only  few months back a young  kid lost his life here in Cordele in an auto accident it was a tragedy.

I don’t claim to have all the answers and maybe I am wrong but it just seems sometimes that the almighty God who controls the Universe in the palm of his hand gives individuals, families and yes  whole communities a test now and then. I do know that without hesitation Cordele and Crisp County all responded to this accident in deep prayer and I know that prayer works, there is no doubt. Sometimes the answer is no but Thank God this time the answer was yes! Joseph demonstrated a lot of courage in this life event, and courage is the ability to face adversity when you are afraid. All of us have learned humility and patience. Perhaps President Kennedy said it best, “ our most basic link is that we inhabit this planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children’s future. And we are all mortal. Glad you made it kid, we love you now make it count.IMG_1761c800_josephstokes28j-100

A Message from Mom

Maribeth James Slade at Shepard Center

It is hard to believe that today (January 20th) is the day we finally get to take Joseph home for good. It was 76 days ago that we first got here (Shepherd Center), we had no idea what to expect. We wanted Joseph to walk. That was all we knew and we did not know if it was going to happen. A Doctor in Macon had just told us a few days before that Joe would never walk again. Joe came to Shepherd Center by Ambulance, and in the picture of Joe walking out is the doors he came through when we arrived on November 6th 2015. Through a lot of determination, grit, pain, hardheadness, tears, faith & prayers, and most of all by the Grace of God, Joe Walked out these same doors on January 20th 2016.  I truly believe we would have a completely different outcome had we not come to Shepherds and if Joseph had not had so much encouragement and support from our entire community, all of our family, friends, coworkers, and everyone else in Crisp County and thru out the entire USA (AND SOME IN Canada) we just want to say a huge Thank You! As I have said before, he is everyone’s Baby Joe now, and will always be a Crisp County Cougar # 17. God has been good and Joseph is truly blessed, and I am one Happy Mother. #babyjoesteps #17 Joseph, will continue his therapy in Cordele.  (Submitted by Linda Mitchell