Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Leaving a Legacy...

Kindred Spirit (as Anne of Green Gables calls it)

Hearts that Beat with ours... (as Hal and I call it)

Rare gems of this life...(as it truly is)

Seriously, there are few people who come into our lives like this. Few.

In March of 1989, we moved our family to a new place. It was a hard move for me... but then, all moves are hard for me. As a woman I put down roots... and I had roots that were 7 years old.

But God doesn't make mistakes. I spent some time encouraging our children that our lives would be "richer" because of the people that God had waiting for us in our new place of service. As I encouraged them... the words became truth to me. I had to believe what I was trying to teach them.

Today, over twenty years later, I am so thankful for the fulfillment of those words that I spoke to my children... and to my heart.

Clint and Diana are kindred spirits. Their hearts beat with ours. They are rare gems. Certainly our lives are richer for having known them.

This past week, Diana left this old life, and entered into the joy of her salvation. I am still in shock. She had been battling cancer. I did not know.

They have 11 children. The first three were born when we met them. I was allowed to be the mid-wife's helper for the fourth (and first son). Diana called me when she had the good news of another "blessing" on the way. I was always so ready to rejoice with her!

Just recently (January I think)... one of the older daughters and I connected on FaceBook. But did not ever talk. I looked at pictures. I was glad to have connection again. Then I saw where this daughter was leaving college to go back home. The comment explained that her Mother needed her. I searched the wall /page... to see why. Since I could not find any reason, I assumed that she had given birth to baby # 11. I even said to Hal, "that Diana has had a baby and did not call me!" I was anxiously awaiting for pics to be posted -- and was so glad that I now had the re-connection of Facebook.

So, you can imagine the shock when I opened the message sent to me Wednesday morning. "Mom went home to be with Jesus yesterday afternoon. We are looking at having the funeral this friday afternoon at 2:30. "

I just stared at the computer screen. I told Hal. I wept.

Diana encouraged me in my life.... especially those first years of homeschooling. Diana has encouraged me in her death. Her funeral service was a testimony and celebration of the life she lived.

But I have to be honest and say that I have struggled. I am still struggling. Hal and I discussed it again today. He asked me this morning why I was having such a hard time.

I am still trying to figure that out myself. See, I know where she is. I know that this world was not her home... and that she believed/lived that too. Maybe just the sheer fact that I was expecting the announcement of a birth - and I was faced with the pronouncement of her death. Maybe because I did not get to tell her good-bye. Maybe because I would like to tell her how much she meant to me... And Hal and I decided this morning - that just maybe I was living vicariously through her with all of her babies. My biggest regret for my life is that I had my tubes tied and limited the number of children that I could have. So... I loved her life. I loved her children. I loved the ministry and witness that she lived.

But that is not all. As I sat at the funeral service... I was reminded of many things that I know are true:
Life (on this earth) is short.
Only what is done for Christ Jesus matters.
Life is also full of distractions - to keep us from what God has called us to do.
The woman that fears the Lord - she shall be praised.
Give her the fruit of her hands, and let her works praise her in the gates.

Yes, I spoke truth to my children. Our lives are richer because of the people that God had waiting on us in our new place of service. And Clint and Diana really are kindred spirits/heart beats/rare gems in our lives. Now, heaven is sweeter... and memories are priceless!

Thank you Father for the life and legacy of Diana. Thank you Father for the continued friendship of Clint and their beautiful family.