Yet in the midst of suffering comes healing.
A couple of weeks after Jackie’s death, Liz ask Jesus to come into her life as Lord and Savior. Jack baptized her this past Sunday in our new church home. The church home we were encouraged by Jackie’s leadership to make our own.
And while we have all had our moments/hours/days of sorrow and aching, I believe our family –both immediate and extended- is stronger and more cohesive because of our loss. There’s an openness and necessity to our communication that wasn’t there before.
I won’t pretend there aren’t hard days. This past weekend we threw a little party at home in honor of Liz’s salvation decision, my graduation from Wayland and Jack’s not-50th birthday. It was a lot of fun. We enjoyed good food and great fellowship, but it was a little bittersweet. Joe would’ve been the first guest to arrive because he loved any opportunity to enjoy his family all together. And Jackie would’ve organized some game for the little kids and gently folded the stragglers into the center of the action. Thinking about Thanksgiving and Christmas makes me want to buy tickets to some place far off.
But we won’t. Joe and Jackie taught us that family comes first. And that all things can be withstood with God in you and family beside you. And we have that in spades.