One of my heroes was killed in a car crash Sunday night.
I never met her in person, though I had a couple brief email exchanges. Jenny Groothuis was a mother to 15 children. Some of her children were adopted out of very hard places, some of her children had significant medical needs, yet as I would read of her and her family's doings via her Yahoo group and then facebook, I was overwhelmed with the joy she radiated through all of it. After nearly everything she wrote, I would think to myself, "I want to be like Jenny when I grow up."
See for yourself.
"Peace is always available because Jesus never leaves us alone. We can make our joy conditional on circumstances... but why? There is a different Kingdom, far above the kingdoms of this world, which is characterized by righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. Where King Jesus reigns and His love is the currency. That's where my citizenship is and that's where my hope is."
"The very One who took such time and care to knit us into existence is not hurried or worried by where we are in our journey toward Christ-likeness. The Eternal One sees differently than we do, and the moments we judge as 'not our best' may very well be the ones that are producing the most spiritual fruit. Harvest time is coming, sowing does lead to reaping, and times of refreshment are always available for the heavy-laden. For such a time as this we can say 'thank you' even if we don't understand it all. One day He will flip over the tapestry of our lives and show us the beautiful behind-the-scenes design He was weaving. The threads of His mercy and grace will be more beautiful than any color we have seen yet and time will be no more. Until then we can trust our lives with the Ancient of Days."
Jenny helped me to keep my eyes on Jesus and reminded me that God can always enable us to do far more than we think we can. She also reminded me to enjoy every minute of life... even the hard stuff.
How can you grieve so hard for someone you've never met?