“Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.” ~Romans 12:15, NET
Over the course of the past two weeks, I have witnessed (from a distance) gut wrenching devastation as a family has walked through the loss of their youngest child. I only met the mother of the little boy twice, as she is dear to my friends. The brief conversations I had with her let me know two key things about this rock of a woman:
1) She truly believes in Jesus
2) She believes in the miracle of children
When I heard the news of this precious mommy’s little boy leaving this world, my heart sank to the deepest levels, and I have been mourning for this family. Her little boy, who had just celebrated his fourth birthday, lived in a beautiful home in a beautiful neighborhood, with a beautiful family. Yet he drowned in the family pool when the kids were playing. In the immediate aftermath of his death, facing unbearable grief, his parents chose to make his life—their lives—a living testimony, knowing the world is watching how they mourn. The world is watching all of us who claim the name of Christ, but their are some situations in which the Lord puts people on a unique platform to showcase His power and His might in unspeakable, miraculous ways. This is one of those situations.
As I continue reading stories of this sweet family, I am awestruck by the power of their faith and grateful for the witness they are bearing during this time of tragedy. While they could escape, shut down, and wallow in their pain, they are choosing to stand, praise, and give God glory through the death of their child—knowing he was always God’s child. While I was unable to attend the service celebrating this young life, I have heard countless testimonies of what is being borne from this loss. One little boy’s life has thus far resulted in seven salvations, and that was just at his celebration of life service! Seven, my friends—God’s holy and perfect number. One little boy is being used to display who God is and the faithfulness of Jesus is in all things, even tragedy. There are those who wonder how God could ever take the life of a child and, yet, in innocence is opportunity—opportunity to tell others whose we are. God is doing mighty things through the calling Home of this sweet soul. As his parents stand firmly planted in their trust of God’s sovereign plan, people who did not even believe God existed are being changed and accepting Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior. One child—a son—is leading others to eternity through his death.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” ~John 3:16, NASB
The little boy I shared with you did not live a short life—this little boy facilitated eternal life for countless others. While this child lives in Heaven now, he is nothing short of a hero to those still here. I wonder, if we were to go through such devastation, would our lives be the testimony of those resolute in leading others to Jesus? Or those wandering in the desert of despair, not seeing the beauty God will reap from the ashes? If we truly believe our children are His children, we need to trust Him with their lives and the time He has perfectly appointed. Love them well, lead them well, and lean on Jesus well in all seasons.
“For everything there is an appointed time,
and an appropriate time for every activity on earth:
A time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to uproot what was planted;
A time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
A time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance.” ~Ecclesiastes 3:1-4, NIV
“But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things…I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like Him in his death, and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.” ~Philippians 3:7-11, NIV
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