Life is really moving forward. Despite all my efforts to freeze time, it keeps going. We have had a very cold and snowy winter. Lots of days spent indoors watching movies by the fire. Sounds perfect, huh? Its not, someone is missing. A son, a brother, our Xander is missing. Oh the ache in my heart! I think of all the things he loved about this time of year........he would have loved the movie marathons, free days from school, chicken and dumplings (which i cannot bring myself to make), playing in the snow, but most of all he would have loved the fact that he lived so close to the church gym that even the slick roads couldn't keep him away and that his father had a key!
Xander was our "go" child, and we are learning Charli is just like him. He wanted to go somewhere everyday and school didn't count. He was the first to remind us of a high school basketball game and the first to volunteer to go up to church early with his dad. He would jump at the chance to run errands with me. He loved everything about being with people and just being social.
This weekend was our youth Alpha Weekend (AKA Disciple Now back in the day). It was incredibly hard to think of anything other than the fact that Xander would have loved it. He would have been right in the middle of everything. His wheels would have been spinning with excitement that this time next year it would be his turn to be a REAL youth, not just the youth ministers son.
To be honest, I'm not sure how we are going to handle the reality that if Xander were here, he would be standing on the steps, quickly approaching the YOUTH GROUP! It literally hurts every part of me.
While it hurts, there is a precious warmth that comes over me as I see Xander's friends. I love to see all the kids that he loved so dearly. All the kids he went to school with since pre-k. I need to see them. I want to see them play basketball, as painful as it was. I want them to be involved in church. I want them to be involved in the youth ministry. There is a connection that I can't explain.
I am learning that Joy and Sorrow can coexist. I realize as each day passes that sadness is still so real and present. There is also laughter and joy in our home, which is normally followed by tears. Its just the way it is right now. This is just our life, this is our grief, this is our sadness, this is our joy and this is our thankfulness.
"But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed, perplexed but not in despair, persecuted but not abandoned, struck down but not destroyed."
2 Corinthians 4:7-9
My hurts, hardships, sufferings, joy and blessings are treasures in Heaven. This world can't take them from me.