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Fill - Five Minute Fridays

I'm happy to be joining the new Five Minute Friday host at
I'm usually a bit late to the game, but this thursday finds me up still with a partying 22 month old so here is my five minutes worth on Fill...

Today is that day, three years ago today.  3 Steamy August 7ths ago I had to make that phone call.  The worst phone call I've ever made.  My husband had just touched down in the sun baked dirt of Guatemala for a week of missions with a church group and his brother lay lifeless at the bottom of a Virginia river.
I put off the call, tears clogging my throat.  How was I going to deliver this message when there was no one to comfort him?
I was filled with fear.  Fear of him experiencing the death of a twenty six year old beloved brother all alone.
My friend on the trip told me how my man of few words received the news quietly as I mustered up all my calm to tell him. How he got off the phone and then later was heard screaming into the dark lead sky of night and banging his fist against the walls.
My heart lurches at that thought.  Those two dark days before he was home.

Three trips around the sun have passed and life has marched on.  We've had another baby, a new job, and now possibly even a new move.  But still there is a wound there a soul hole that won't ever be filled again this side of Heaven. I know its there, even when my husband's eyes never mention it because I am a sister too and on that terrible night I remember thinking all the horror I would be experiencing if I was in his shoes.
Strange isn't it?
Earlier on that same morning I had just heard that a friend had given birth. There is joy and sorrow happening all around us every day.  Hearts beating pain fresh and full and hearts throbbing full with joy.
It was such a beautifully brilliant August day and I remember walking around a park with a sun dress and two girls and smiling about life and musing about my husband knee deep in the thick of Guatemalan villages and just four hours later knowing my in laws were watching my brother in law pulled out of a muddy river bank.
Its strange how life is filled with things that seem so raw and out of sync with our big picture.  They just don't seem to fit with all the good that is going on.  Thats how this seemed, completely.

Three years later today I sit with a friend whose tears stream down her face over that wretch - cancer and I have little words to offer, to fill the gap.  I've watched her kids so that she can be with her husband and comfort her father-in-law.  The fresh sadness fills her green eyes and splashes hot down her freckles.
My neighbor motions me to the fence and tells me his good friend passed from this earth today after just a three month battle.
Let me tell you, this day has been filled with the heavy and hard to handle.

I flash back to the day my brother in law's young body was placed into that clay hole, coffin soon to be swallowed up by dust. I can picture my husband's body wracking with sobs and I remember the way he laid his hand and barely got out, "We will miss you, Brian."  This life is so filled with pain, raw and real for all of us.  None of us are left out.
I'm so thankful for a future that slips from the icy dark of death into the eclipsing glory of Heaven through the palms of our Jesus' hands.  Those hands that have been filled with the earth as He spun it into motion and filled with the nails as He poured out His love to redeem it.  And now those hands that now only bare the scares that He might whisper over these filled with bones and dust graves one day, "Come Forth".
I have to think this way, remember this or all this dark world will fill my soul with hopeless poison.

The day ends and my girls know what the day is.  They are talking about funerals as I'm making cheddar biscuits. Strange topic, but because of the fodder of the day its a given.
My Madelyn she bears the hope.  "We'll have a funeral for you mom."
I smile, "Thanks Madelyn. I'm sure you will."
I get it, as sure as a baby's cry and total dependance is a part of life so is this loss of everyone we know. Even these little kids know it and there life is so young, fresh, and innocent.
Just as Madelyn's true blue eyes offer me hope through all of it.  That its just part of the story with a better end in sight.  I can kiss her tiny face and agree with the hope in her eyes.
I can have a heart filled with resurrection hope, just like her.  That girl that whispered to me one day, "Heaven is the most real place, mom."


  1. Hi there from a FMF friend! Thank you for sharing your thoughts. What a beautiful tribute...

  2. Wow. Thanks for your words today - your daughter's attitude is really striking. I've known the sudden loss of a parent and have lived dreading the inevitable 'goodbye' to my remaining parent ever since. To reframe the reality of death - and know that a funeral will inevitably come, but with hope - that's a truly life-changing thing for us to think about.

  3. I love the beautiful words and the raw emotions that went into this post. Death and life swirl around us on any given day and one seems to go hand in hand with the other. Knowing that God fills our emptiness is a reminder that we are fragile but He is our strength. Blessed to be visiting you from FMF! Mary

  4. Thank you ladies. I am struck by my girl's hope too. I hate that they've already come to know about death, but their faith blesses me richly. This morning i got up to read my Bible and my oldest girl crept down the creaky wooden steps and curled up next to me. I read aloud the words I was on in John chapter 14. I thought it was perfect timing to read to my sleepy girl, "Let not your heart be troubled: believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I come again and I will receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also". ....Those words were such hopeful words to start a hopefully brighter day today. thanks for stopping by Ladies!

  5. My heart hurts along with yours, Summer. May the Holy Spirit bring comfort to you, your husband and your families during this season of remembrance. May He fill you with comfort and also words of comfort for those hurting around you. Hugs and prayers, my friend.

  6. Oh, Somer. You really have a gift with words.

    I, too, have watched my husband suffer the loss of a family member and it was an awful experience. Thank you for capturing so beautifully the juxtaposition of aching, ugly death and fresh, hopeful little lives.

  7. Lovely words. Painful tragedies bring us closer to the hope of heaven and longing for it deeply.

  8. Forgot to say I'm visiting from FMF. This is Sara from Poets and Saints.


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