Just a little pregnancy update: Twenty-two weeks means we're more than halfway to meeting Lentil in person! Just like with Frazier, all my doctor's appointments have been short and uneventful which is just how I like them to be and I'm grateful! I really can't complain so far and time is flying by. Just growing a new human...you know, that old chestnut. :)
And speaking of motherhood and it's perks ;), this year for Mother's Day, Josh and Frazier got me an electric griddle...which I've been wanting since every endeavor to make pancakes is little more than an exercise in frustration. And we make pancakes often. I've made two batches thus far and EVERY pancake turned out perfect.
You may have noticed the medical fundraising widget on my sidebar recently. I am removing it because a week ago today, Kelli died. I do not say that she lost her fight with cancer, because having been delivered from battle is not tantamount to defeat.
I've heard it said that for a Christian, there is no more ultimate form of healing than death- when the immortal soul is relieved of its perishable shell and gathered to an eternity of perfection. "When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.” “O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” 1 Cor 15:54-57
I lamented on Wednesday that I woke up that morning, presumably healthy, with my sweet little boy and the hope of a daughter at the end of the summer and the dream of happy days ahead to spend with them, while Kelli would never have that opportunity here on earth. And though it didn't seem fair, what I lack the capacity to fathom is how much better a Wednesday Kelli spent. "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him," 1Cor 2:9
There are better things ahead than any we leave behind. I am filled with praises that this is something Kelli knew and that those who loved her "...do not grieve like those who have no hope." 1 Thess. 4:13. What a beautiful thing to know that such a beautiful person is now in such a beautiful place. "But God will redeem my life from the grave; he will surely take me to himself." Psalm 49:15 "The righteous perish...devout men are taken away, and no one understands that the righteous are taken away to be spared from evil." Isaiah 57:1
I felt it unfit to simply remove the sidebar widget without fanfare. Though this post will be far less than her memory deserves, and her struggle and her family's pain isn't something I can claim to even begin to understand, I thought it pertinent to honor in part the admirable way she lived and died and the God to whom she belongs.
"...whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord." Rom 14:8
I have not lost a child, or a sibling, or my own health (as yet) so those are sorrows with which I cannot fully empathize, but what I do know is the God who will comfort me in the event they occur, and witnessing the grace in the sufferings of others like Kelli and those she left behind reminds me that my hope is built on something which cannot be dissolved even by the deepest pain.
For all the people who live far longer lives of futility, hypocrisy, and selfishness, we are blessed God drops in people like Kelli who remind us to make the most of the time we're given and to enjoy the loveliness God offers us in this world, but to live for what lies beyond it.
If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied. 1 Cor. 15:19
“Most people, if they had really learned to look into their own hearts, would know that they do want, and want acutely, something that cannot be had in this world. There are all sorts of things in this world that offer to give it to you, but they never quite keep their promise. At present we are on the outside… the wrong side of the door. We discern the freshness and purity of morning, but they do not make us fresh and pure. We cannot mingle with the pleasures we see. But all the pages of the New Testament are rustling with the rumor that it will not always be so. Someday, God willing, we shall get “in”… We will put on glory… that greater glory of which Nature is only the first sketch. We do not want to merely “see” beauty–though, God knows, even that is bounty enough. We want something else which can hardly be put into words–to be united with the beauty we see, to pass into it, to receive it into ourselves, to bathe in it, to become part of it." -C.S. Lewis
That is the beauty Kelli knows now.
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers,neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of Godthat is in Christ Jesus our Lord. -Romans 8:38-39