Archives For Jamie Caulk

8 years

Jamie Caulk grave

AG体育Today makes 8 years since my son, Jamie went to heaven. No matter how you are moving along in life, as the calendar creeps toward October, a sadness overwhelms my heart.

If you haven’t listened to my son’s song, it is on the right hand column on this blog. Jamie wrote and recorded all his songs and this one is so prophetic.

AG体育8 in the bible means new beginnings. Jesus created the world in 7 days and rested on the 7th. On the 8th day it was a new beginning. I’ve been thinking about the number 8 a lot this week, pondering if it has meaning for my family since Jamies journey to heaven

Bobby Reyes

is the 14 year old boy who was disconnected from life-support on Tuesday, October 15th. at Mott’s Children’s Hospital in Ann Arbor.

AG体育October 15th is the day we received our first brain dead diagnosis at Vanderbilt. Of course it was overturned and more tests were done. Tests like the Apnea which we did not know were harmful for my son and yet the “gold standard” for pronouncing “brain death.”

AG体育The blood flow that they “said” would show NO blood flow but with thousands praying for a positive blood flow test, there was blood flow. It was so obvious and the technician administrating the test looked at me and smiled and said there was blood flow. But, Vanderbilt back-tracked and said “well, we expected some blood flow…it’s just not in the right place.”

AG体育OK, so why didn’t you say that?

AG体育Yesterday, I drove to Flat Rock to pay my respects to Bobby Reyes and his family. The first person I walked in to was Sarah, Bobby’s mom.

After expressing my condolences, I told her that 8 years ago tomorrow was when my son, Jamie went to heaven.

She said, “well you know exactly what I am going through”.

AG体育Yes, grieving mom’s KNOW.

AG体育Child loss is like no other grief. Here we are at 8 years and I’m still holding on.

Bobby and Jamie have seen it ALL. Jesus and heaven in all it’s glory. A hope that we all long for while living on earth.

Randy Alcorn, who’s book Heaven changed my life says it this way.

I think of our lives in terms of a dot and a line, signifying two phases. Our present life on earth is the dot. It begins. It ends. It’s brief. However, from the dot, a line extends that goes on forever. That line is eternity, which Christians will spend in heaven. Right now we’re living in the dot. But what are we living for? The shortsighted person lives for the dot. The person with perspective lives for the line.

AG体育I have no idea what God has in store for me or Sarah, but I know God’s plan will not be thwarted.

I think of Tammi Carr who lost her son, Chad Carr and started a and is now raising money for pediatric research into DIPG, (Diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma).

To date, The ChadTough Foundation has raised more than $9 million to support pediatric brain cancer research, with an emphasis on DIPG. 

The amazing work of a grieving mother, working to help save other children and parents from the loss she and her family endure without Chad.

Sarah, told me yesterday she wants to work on a Bobby’s Law to prevent hospitals from unplugging their children or loved ones from a ventilator until enough time is allowed to see if they will recover. She mentioned 30 days, which is interesting because I have told my own kids IF I am ever on a ventilator to allow 30 days to see if I will recover and then let me go.

AG体育This sounds reasonable to me. See not forever but time.

I told Sarah, I wanted to include in Bobby’s Law that parents be told what the Apnea testAG体育 is and does. Why should hospitals be allowed to say, “we’re going to do one more test” without explaining exactly WHAT the test is?

You believe sitting there with a loved one hooked up to multiple machines every test is for benefit of your loved one, to help them get better. NOT TRUE.

I know some parents just go along with whatever the doctors say, never question and that is their choice. But…there are some parents who do question and want to delay pulling the plug to give more time for the brain to heal. That number is growing and this MUST be addressed and changed.

Of course THIS will be a huge undertaking but we do serve a big God who is well able to do above all we could ask or think.

Jamie

AG体育Jamie, my sweet boy who was smart, talented, athletic with a tender heart towards animals and everyone. NOT one day goes by that I don’t think about you and miss you terribly.

AG体育But, I know I will see you soon.

Life on earth is a continuity, it begins in heaven when it ends on earth.

We will experience continuity between our current lives and our resurrected lives, with the same memories and relational histories.

I have included the video of Jamie’s Memorial, Celebration of Life Service.

Four Long Years

AG体育Today makes four years that my son, Jamie passed on from this earthly life and went home. Home is where God is and where those who believe in Jesus will spend eternity. Heaven is not the default location of where everyone will go, heaven is where we will spend eternity based on our relationship with Jesus while on earth.

Buzz LIghtyearOne of my children, Andrew, use to say like Buzz Lightyear in Toy Store, “to infinity and beyond”. That’s a pretty good description of eternity..infinity and beyond.

AG体育When you go to funerals it sounds like everyone has gone to heaven. But that is a false supposition and one that can keep people from the good news of Jesus Christ.

AG体育C. S. Lewis in his book, The Problem with Pain writes of Hell, “There is no doctrine which I would more willingly remove from Christianity than this, if it lay in my power. But it has the full support of Scripture and, especially, of our Lord’s own words; it has always been held by Christendom, and it has the support of reason.”

Matthew 7:13-14: “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to LIFE, and only a few find it.”

So heaven is NOT our default location.

What  keeps us out of Heaven is universal: “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). Sin separates us from a relationship with God (Isaiah 59:2). God is so holy that he cannot allow sin into his presence: “Your eyes are too pure to look on evil; you cannot tolerate wrong” (Habakkuk 1:13). Because we are sinners, we are not entitled to enter God’s presence. We cannot enter Heaven as we are. Randy Alcorn, Heaven Book

AG体育James 4:14 says that we are a mist, a vapor. We do not know what tomorrow brings.

I am sure Jamie did not have a clue his life would end here on earth on October 20, 2011. 

AG体育Matthew Henry said in his commentary on James 4:14

What is your life? It is even a vapour that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away, . God that wisely left us in the dark concerning future events, and even concerning the duration of life itself. We know not what shall be on the morrow; we may know what we intend to do and to be, but a thousand things may happen to prevent us.

We are not sure of life itself since it is but as a vapour, something in appearance, but nothing solid nor certain, easily scattered and gone. We can fix the hour and minute of the sun’s rising and setting to-morrow, but we cannot fix the certain time of a vapour’s being scattered; such is our life: it appears but for a little time, and then vanisheth away; it vanisheth as to this world, but there is a life that will continue in the other world.”

The Good News

The good news is that the price for Adams’ sin and ultimately ours as it was passed down to us from the fall, is that hell does NOT have to be our default destination. When Jesus died on the cross He said, “it is finished”. This simply means the debt has been paid. Finished, done, debt cancelled. In Greek the words, “it is finished” means paid in full.

AG体育You may think you have done too many things wrong in your life to be forgiven, but that is simply NOT true. There is no sin or behavior you have done that can’t be forgiven…when you repent and ask.

AG体育Repent sounds like a religious word, but it just means to turn in TURN AND GO IN A NEW DIRECTION. There is nothing you can do to work for or earn your salvation. It is a gift. Jesus paid the price, he took on the cross what we deserved and paid for it. God see’s everything anyway so when you ask for forgiveness be real, you can’t hide anything from him.

C. S. Lewis, said, “All your life an unattainable ecstasy has hovered just beyond the grasp of your consciousness. The day is coming when you will wake to find, beyond all hope, that you have attained it, or else, that it was within your reach and you have lost it forever.”

AG体育You can never resolve your sin by “working on it”. It is all grace. Jesus is absolutely crazy about you, He adores you and when you walk in that truth every day you feel loved and accepted.

St Augustine said, “If we but turn to God, that itself is a gift of God.” My deepest awareness of myself is that I am deeply loved by Jesus Christ and I have done nothing to earn it or deserve it.

 

How Do I Know I Am Going to Heaven?

Over the years, I have had many people ask me, “how do I know IF I am going to heaven”?

AG体育John the Apostle said in 1 John 5:13, “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may KNOW that you have eternal life.” So yes we CAN know, we don’t have to “hope so”, we can know.

Do you know?

AG体育Can you say yes, I am going to spend infinity beyond in heaven?

AG体育Today is the day of salvation, if you do not know or are not sure. I Cor 6:2

Today is the day my son went to his eternal home. He has been there four long years for us who miss him so. Yet we KNOW we will see him and Mike and “Lilly Bear” again.

The Solution

Jesus provided the solution to live with him and our loved ones forever.

AG体育1) Admit you are a sinner  (1John 1:9)

AG体育2) Ask for forgiveness

AG体育3) Accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior

AG体育4) Recognize he came to earth and paid the price and settled the debt. It is finished.

AG体育5) Accept that you are forgiven and your sins are forgiven.

Psalm 103:10-12 For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is His love for you;as far as the east is to the west, so far as He removed our sins.

East and West can NOT be measured so they are gone forgotten.

Jamie Caulk This is my post today for you in honor of my son who has gone before me and enjoying LIFE forevermore.

I love you Jamie and miss you SO much, see you soon.

Mom

 

 

 

Yesterday was four years since I got the call that no mom ever wants to get. It is always such a numbing day. In fact, the next six will be just as hard as we approach the day we finally had to let Jamie go. I’ll give a quick update and then I am going to share Chapter one in my book, Hold Me Long Enough to Fight.

I picked this title for two reasons, one being it is the name of a song Jamie wrote and produced. It is linked in the side column and two it reflects how I feel about any loved one being given TIME to fight if they are in a horrible accident.

Four Years

AG体育I find that hard to believe it is has been four years since I have spoken to my son. He is never far away from my thoughts and yet the pain is not so intense and for that I am thankful. It is just painful as the days approach that he went to our eternal home and left us behind. I know he is fine, and wouldn’t come back IF given the chance but for those who miss him, it is a continual void in our lives every day.

In January, I went out on my own and started Savvy Realty Group. I have a fabulous team of buyer agents and we have had the BEST year in real estate since Jamie’s accident. So career wise life is good. We have had our up’s and down’s as a family as I have walked through numerous challenges with some of my children. I’m not going into details as it is their stories to tell if and when they want to.

I started a Healing Care course, support group that my former ObGyn and his wife teach in Ann Arbor and I am learning to let go of painful things that have happened over the years when Mike and I were in ministry. Although I had forgiven it is a deeper work that God is doing in my life. I desire more than anything to finish my race and accomplish the rest of what He has for me on planet earth.

AG体育I hope you enjoy Chapter one.

Chapter 1

A Miracle for Jamie

Jamie Caulk I was humming along to the music on the car radio when the ringing of my cell phone interrupted me. I fumbled in my purse for it. Being a Realtor I was constantly on the phone and knew I’d probably let it ring through to voicemail this time. I glanced at the screen. It was a 615 number—a Nashville number, but not one I recognized. I was on the way to Nashville from Ann Arbor, Michigan to celebrate my granddaughter’s first birthday.

Thinking that my son Matthew, or Sharon, my best friend in Nashville, might be using a borrowed phone to check and see how far along I was, I answered.

AG体育A perfunctory female voice at the other end said, “Ma’am this is Vanderbilt Hospital Trauma Unit calling. Are you Jamie Caulk’s mother?”

Immediately, even before I had processed her words with my brain, my heart pounded, and my mouth went dry. “Yes, I’m Jamie’s mother. I’m driving to Nashville. What’s wrong?”

I knew I was speaking too loudly into the phone, but I didn’t care. Something was wrong, very wrong. Thoughts tumbled over each other, vying for my attention as I tried to understand the context of the conversation. Jamie must have given this person my number. Was he in trouble? Why was I talking to this woman and not Jamie?

Why didn’t they put Jamie on the line?

“Ma’am can you pull the car over?”

“Hold on,” I said as I pulled the steering wheel to the right and eased the car onto the shoulder. I sat for a second acutely aware that I was about to hear something unfathomable. I took a deep breath and said, “Okay, I’ve pulled over; please tell me what’s wrong.”

The woman’s voice remained flat and detached. “I am a social worker in the Trauma Unit. Your son,

Jamie was in a car accident early this morning. The accident was near Vanderbilt Hospital, so the EMTs were able to get to him very quickly. He was conversant when he was brought in. The doctors were stabilizing him so they could perform surgery on his neck when he had an episode and had to be intubated. He has not had any feeling below his nipples since he arrived.”

AG体育I struggled to take in what was being said. What did she mean stabilizing him for neck surgery and no feeling? Was she telling me my son was paralyzed? Was that what the surgery was for? And it all happened early this morning. Why hadn’t she called hours ago? Hadn’t I checked my phone before I started out? There were no messages. It made no sense. Perhaps it was a huge mistake. I checked the clock.

AG体育“It’s 10:00 A.M., why am I just now being called?”

“Your son is 27, he’s an adult. On his admission form, he requested that no one in his family be informed. When he was no longer able to communicate, the medical team deemed his situation critical and were legally able to override his request.” ( Found out when I got the medical records this was not true as in his own handwriting he had written down my name and cell phone number.)

AG体育I felt my body start to shake. It was all I could do to hold the phone. No longer able to communicate…deemed critical… neck surgery… paralyzed… Visions of Jamie throwing the football 40 yards down the field to Seth Belinsky flashed in my mind; Jamie skating down the ice with his arms raised when he scored a goal in hockey; Jamie sitting at ESPN in Nashville doing a radio broadcast.

Now I imagined him laying on a gurney in a room filled with electronic devices, all alone with none of his family there with him.

AG体育Thoughts of my youngest daughter Allyssa being in a car accident in 2007 flashed through my mind too. I remembered the roller coaster ride; first the terror of being told she’d been t-boned by a truck then the relief of hearing she was not badly injured, followed by the shock of seeing her the next day and realizing she had a broken pelvis, ruptured bladder and a traumatic brain injury. That had been five years ago. But look at Allyssa now, I told myself, she’s healthy and fit. Jamie is strong and fit and young, he’ll pull through this. I just need to get to him.

“What should I do?” I asked the social worker.

AG体育“You need to get to the hospital quickly but safely, ma’am. How far away are you?”

“About seven hours,” I said, “but my son Matt, Jamie’s brother, lives in Nashville. He can be there in

twenty-five minutes.”

AG体育“Fine,” said the voice. “Have him go to the entrance of Vanderbilt Trauma Unit then up to the tenth floor.

AG体育“Drive safely,” said the social worker as the phone clicked off. I speed-dialed Matthew’s number, knowing that I was about to change his plans dramatically; his daughter Presley’s first birthday would be taking a back seat now.

“Mom?”

AG体育“Matt, we don’t have time to waste,” I said, imagining how odd this must sound. “Get over to Vanderbilt Trauma Center, Jamie was in a bad car wreck early this morning.”

“Early this morning? Why didn’t you tell me sooner?”

AG体育“I just found out. Apparently he didn’t want any of us to know, but now he’s critical. You have to go now.”

AG体育“What’s wrong with him? Did they tell you what’s wrong?”

AG体育I took a deep breath, Matthew, my second child, and oldest son, was always the one who needed answers, but now was not the time. “I don’t know Matt. They said something about him being okay when he got there and then some neck surgery and then he crashed. Please, I need to hear you tell me he ‘s going to be okay. Get in your car now, okay?”

“On my way, Mom,” Matthew said, “I’ll call you as soon as I know anything.”

AG体育“Thank you,” I replied, “And pray Matt—pray hard.”

“Yes, Mom,” Matt replied softly. And I knew he would. Matthew had a close walk with the Lord. As a family, we had always been there for one another and prayed together during challenging times.

AG体育I don’t know how long I sat motionless in my car on the side of the freeway. I wanted to go but was afraid I was too panicked to drive. My mind raced a mile a minute over the conversation with the social worker at the trauma center. Had she said Jamie was still alive just to get us there? Was he already dead and she didn’t want to tell me on the phone? It was something that happened in movies, wasn’t it? I imaged Jamie lying with a sheet pulled over his head. Waves of nausea rolled over me. I wanted to wail, but I forced myself to stay calm. I dialed Matt again.

“I’m almost ready to get off I-65, Mom, only about ten minutes away. Not much traffic. Have you heard anything more?”

“No,” I said. “Matt, find out if Jamie is dead and they are just telling me he is okay until I get there. Promise; make them take you to him. You have to see him. Don’t take no for an answer.”

“Okay, Mom,” said Matt, “I’ll make sure I see him, and I’ll call you as soon as I do. If there’s something…wrong”—he choked up at the word—“I’ll tell you, I promise.”

AG体育I took a few deep breaths and remembered my husband. Mike was a social studies teacher at Belleville High School. He’d be in class now. If I called he would pick up the phone since he knew I would only interrupt him in an emergency. But I couldn’t tell him the little I knew over the phone. He’d already had two heart attacks and needed to hear this news as gently as possible. Instead, I called our oldest daughter Christa. As calmly as I could speak, I told her what I knew. I asked her to drive to Belleville and tell her dad in person. I also asked her to call the rest of the family to let them know what was happening.

After I’d flicked the phone shut I turned the car key and eased the Lexus back onto the freeway. I felt numb—empty—useless—a million miles away from my beautiful son who might be dying right that minute.

AG体育I gripped the steering wheel as tears flowed down my cheeks. “Keep him, safe Lord,” I prayed, “Keep him safe. Wrap your arms around him and keep him safe. We need a miracle right now, a miracle, please Lord, a miracle for Jamie.”

Thanks for reading Chapter 1.

I love you, James Lindsay Caulk, I miss you so much, but I will see you soon.

Jamie’s Journal

Jamie Caulk Journal AG体育The last 18 months I have been doing a lot of remodeling to my home of 25 years. In the middle of painting, going to Salvation Army, renting three 150 ton dumpsters you learn to be careful that you are NOT accidentally getting rid of something important.

AG体育My husband was a pack rat…” you never know” he use to say.

Living in the same house for 25 years…we accumulated a lot of stuff.

My great-grandfather was a Methodist minister and my grandmother had a lot of his library. When she died Mike and I took boxes of his books. It was fun to look through them, read some of them and see the handwritten notes in the margins. I have given a ton of books to the Saline Library but not really sure what to do with these very OLD books.

Today I was going through some shelf’s and I came across Jamie’s diary. I didn’t even know he had a diary. He must have ditched it because he had only one entry, but it was a good one.

 

He wrote this on Thanksgiving Day 2009.

AG体育God is so faithful, what could have been a tough day became one the most blessed days for me EVER. Writing about it now is bringing some of the same feelings back to me. Praise God. He does renew. He does restore. He is so good. I am so thankful to be chosen and loved and able to share such things with others. The fellowship and love and laughter we shared will never be taken from me. It will go with me to eternity. I love you Jesus. I am yours.

Jamie Caulk Journal AG体育WOW, He did take that into eternity as this was written only 2 years before the Lord took Jamie home.

I don’t know whyAG体育 I found it today, but I love those God nods as we call them in my family. It brought such joy to Andrew and Christa when reading it. As a grieving mother anything like this brings such comfort.

The last two weeks have been particularly hard, as another young man in the Saline community died from injuries sustained in an auto accident. My heart was breaking for the pain I know the family is going through and how their lives will never be the same.

I was in Nashville when I heard the news and was also able to spend time with Jamie’s girlfriend. It is hard to see her still learning to deal with the loss of Jamie and yet oddly comforting to know someone else loved him as much as we did.

It’s also been hard with Michigan football starting in a few days. I know right? But, our family especially Mike and Jamie were so intense when it came to Michigan football. We are so excited about our new coach as both Mike and Jamie wanted Jim Harbaugh to come back years ago.

Now Jim is here and they are not. 

With all that has happened the last two weeks, reading Jamie’s journal was a much-needed God nod.

Jamie's journal AG体育Dr. John Rice said in his book Bible Facts about Heaven,

“Not one in that blessed land would, if he could, return to the decaying form he left, to live out the life he had planned, to see the happiest future he could imagine on this earth. Death for a sinner is horrible, but never to a child of God. “Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them” (Rev. 14:13). Blessed and happy are the Christian dead!”

The majority of the time we sit and talk about Jamie, Mike and Lillian we always end up saying, “but…they wouldn’t come back even ifAG体育 they could.

As King David said when his son died, “he will not come back, but I will go to him.”

 

 

Happy Birthday Jamie,

Jamie Birthday Card

To say we miss you seems so trivial… I keep waiting for this “new normal” to happen that everyone says will happen. I’m not sure I really believe in that concept because our family is just NOT the same without you and dad and “Lily”.

I’m not sure I really believe in that concept because our family is just NOT the same without you and dad and “Lily”.

I think that is one of the hardest things for all of us, Christa, Matt, Andrew and Allyssa, is that the whole family being changed in such a short time has thrown us all off-balance.

It just doesn’t “feel” right, like being in a new family.

AG体育How is that normal?

AG体育All of us have grown closer if that was possible.

Life Lessons

 


I have learned that everyone who is living will experience loss and suffering and only then do people understand grief. Recently, I was visiting someone in the hospital and got to chatting with a family who was standing outside. They were going to see their 80-year old mother who had just lost her son. She was the sister and it was her brother who had died. The mother just could not handle the grief so they had to admit her.

AG体育I understood, but many people would have not understood how a 80-year old mother could be in such crippling grief over the loss of her 62-year-old son.

The first year you went to heaven I was completely numb and in shock.  When the numbness and shock wore off, I walked around dead or on auto-pilot. I did what I had to do, sold homes and read so many books on Heaven I could write one myself.

AG体育The second year I focused on writing your story to be able to help other families going through a traumatic situation. The book is finished and I am just waiting for a physician to finish editing the medical part. Working on the book and doing all the research allowed me to focus beyond my pain.

AG体育We are now in the third year and again I am going through ANOTHER transformation. In the book, You Can Heal Your Heart, by Louise Hay she says and I have found it to be profoundly true is that:

“Grief is the window that provides the opportunity to examine your primal thinking about relationships.”

When death invades a home, in the beginning friends, family, acquaintances rally around, bring food, text to check on you, call and do all the wonderful things to help you get through your loss. Then it stops, perhaps they think we are “over it” and we are “back to normal”.

AG体育Truthfully, what else could they do?

AG体育People have their own lives to live, with all of their own challenges.  But we are still HERE facing the days and nights without you and dad and bear. Life for someone grieving can be a very dark, and lonely place. There have been so many times where I had to beg God to give me the love and forgiveness He has for them and to heal my heart from the disappointments.

AG体育The joy I get is when I am helping and advocating for others in worse situations than me. Children who have been ripped out of the arms of their loving parents due to the crisis in ; parents whose children are suffering from cancer.  So heartbreaking and I can “feel” the pain and grief they are walking through.

So yes I am being shaken up on what is important in life and what does God want me to do to finish my race.

Celebrating Jamie Caulk

Jamie caulk on set at Lee University So here we are on your 31st birthday and even though you are not physically present you are still inspiring and motivating me to live life with a sensitivity to others. You were amazing at this and gifted in understanding when people were in pain.

One of the sweetest most inspiring letters we got about you was from this girl:

I guess five years ago or so I was at Starbucks completely utterly totally overwhelmed. I had been assaulted and had just found out that I was pregnant.

AG体育I had no clue what I was going to do. I went to Starbucks. And your brother was in line and he pulled me aside and asked if he could pray for me. He prayed for the life that was to be.

He prayed that I would have peace and that God’s grace and love would surround me. He looked at me and said “Be brave. God never gives us something we can’t handle. We serve a faithful and mighty God.”

I cried and cried to this complete stranger and poured my heart out of all the questions I had wondering where God was and how my plans had failed. And he looked at me without judgment and said “God’s plans are so much bigger than ours. You have to trust him. Your faith will get you through this!! Sometimes God has to take us through pain to get us back where we need to be. To make us remember that we are not in control and that He has this bigger and better plan than we could ever imagine.”

AG体育I cannot tell you what those words did for me. I now have a little girl and I cannot imagine my life without her. Never did I imagine my life like this but never would I change it.

I never got to thank your brother. He was a complete stranger to me and as far as I was concerned he was God’s messenger to me that day.

AG体育So even though I cannot thank him here on this earth I will get to thank him in eternity. And I wanted You to know how thankful I am for his life here on earth!!

 Jamie Caulk See you soon

AG体育Jesus says, in John 16:33 to “Be of good cheer”.  The new house is nearly ready for you. Moving day is coming. The dark winter is about to be magically transformed into spring. One day soon you will be home—for the first time.

Meanwhile, we on this dying Earth can relax and rejoice for our loved ones who are in the presence of Christ. As the apostle Paul tells us, though we naturally grieve at losing loved ones, we are not “to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope” (1 Thessalonians 4:13). Our parting is not the end of our relationship, only an interruption. We have not “lost” them, because we know where they are. They are experiencing the joy of Christ’s presence in a place so wonderful that Christ called it Paradise. (excerpt from Randy Alcorn’s , book Heaven)

When I think of you which is every day, multiple times. I don’t look at the sky and clouds. I look around at our lake house, our home in Saline, the earth I am now living on and the places I visit.  I KNOW that one day we will all be together on the New Earth without the curse of sin and death and without the suffering and corruption of our political systems.

I take the advice you gave the young lady as my own from you, “God’s plans are so much bigger than ours. You have to trust him. Your faith will get you through this!!

Mostly I long for never having to say, good-bye again.

Happy Birthday “Jamo-Pup”, I love you to the moon and back,

Mom