Saturday, June 25, 2016

JESUS BE NEAR

Today, my friend buried his bride of 9 short years.
Today, two small children said goodbye to their mommy.
Today, the world lost a Jesus-girl who honored her husband, loved her children, and was faithful to her Lord and Savior.
 
The Shippey Family
Chris, Christina, Malakhi, Brooklyn

Last week, my friend buried her husband of 28 years.
Last week, three children said goodbye to their hero.
Last week, the world lost a mighty warrior who ran to the hurting, the broken, and the forgotten all around the world with the goal of pouring out love and spreading the Gospel by being the hands and feet of Jesus.

Craig Miller

This morning, my heart is heavy.
This morning, the tears flow freely.
This morning, I am sad that my friends have to grieve so deeply.

I can't imagine the pain involved when your spouse, your person, the one whom your soul is mingled, passes from life to death and leaves you behind.  Jesus, how does a broken one-flesh heart heal from that without having an intimate relationship with You?

You tell us in Psalm 34:18 that You are near the brokenhearted.
You tell us in Isaiah 41:10 that You will strengthen and help us.
You tell us in Psalm 147:3 that You heal the brokenhearted and bind up wounds.

God, I pray that you will envelope the deepest places of their hurting hearts today.  I pray you will be their refuge and their strength.  I ask you to bind up their wounds and lead them along the path of healing.  Jesus, I pray today that as they face dark days ahead, that you will be near.  Jesus, please be near!

These two giants, these two friends, they left a mark on the world.  My human brain can not even begin to understand how calling them home instead of leaving them here was the right decision.

Their lives brought You glory.
Their journeys pointed people to You.

Even though I am sad and confused, I echo Isaiah and declare that my thoughts are not Your thoughts and my ways are not Your ways. Your ways and thoughts are higher than mine and I stand on that truth and I trust that You know best.

To the Shippey family and the Miller family, I am so deeply sorry for your loss.  Keith and I dearly love you and would do anything for you and your children.  Christina and Craig hold a special place in our hearts and we are committed to praying for you in the days and months ahead.  

“Your most profound and intimate experiences of worship will likely be your darkest days - when your heart is broken, when you feel abandoned, when you are out of options, when the pain is great – and you turn to God alone.”
{Rick Warren}

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