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14 October, 2010 / theexpositor

Thinking of and praying for a friend…..

Life is strange ain’t it. It’s so short too. That’s definitely cliché’ but as I get older it really starts to sink in.

I had the blessing of looking into the eyes of a friend today, to watch those eyes swell up with tears over the thought of losing his son, and it melted my heart like it has been melted few times before.

Rick, his wife Julie and their oldest son Neil are remarkable people. They are devoted Christians and committed to their family and friends. This morning, they stood beside Stephen, Rick and Julie’s youngest boy and Neil’s brother, and loved him as they have for some long, and loved him into the waiting arms of the Lord.

I didn’t know Stephen well. I have known his Dad for quite some time as we attended the same church and I have had the pleasure of working with him at my job with the government. But I, and many others, have known of and been inspired by the devotion and dedication of this family; the unbelievable love and care they had for Stephen and for one another as something that can only be explained as direct grace from God.

This morning as I was working on a project that Rick had put together, I was surprised to see that he had stopped by to check in on things. I took his hand and told him I was surprised to see him there, and it was then that the tears began to flow. I asked him to come to my office, where all I knew to do was to hug him, tell him I loved him and cry with him. One cannot imagine the pain and sorrow that he and his family must be experiencing now as their darling son has departed this life.

But I am assured of one lasting and joyful note, that just as Stephen departed this life, he arrived at the next; a new, joyful, vibrant, peaceful and whole life as He was promoted to Glory and touched the hands of Jesus. Oh how I envy him. There is sadness and sorrow as he is gone, but there is rejoicing and hope in knowing that God is faithful.

So today, as I and many others mourn the passing of Stephen, and our hearts weep for his loving family as they grieve; we rejoice with them knowing that the only time Stephen need bow, from now through eternity, is at the feet of the Savior.