The passing of a dear friend and confidant, Mari Ellen, has brought such overwhelming sadness . . . a place where words seem so utterly insufficient. I have sought comfort in picturing her dancing in heaven with our Lord, no pain in her back or hip to speak of, just a gleaming smile and a laugh that warms the soul. Comfort does not always come, however. To think we laughed together at the thought of saying good bye at Christmas thinking with surety we would see one another again come summer. To think we mused about getting coffee together and working on curriculum in the sunshine. She counseled me through my senior year of high school and her presence in my life has been a constant (which is a novelty in itself) since then. Today I have been reading messages she sent me and recalling to heart the love she spoke into my life. A recent message from her reads:
(Here she spoke of the weather and the pain she was experiencing, then she responded to what I had shared with her)
Yes, you are GROWING UP! With all the joy and challenge that involves. It's fun to watch you learning and maturing . . . write when you can.
How I wish I could write her and tell her my growth and maturity is a reflection of her words of wisdom and loving encouragement. Her listening ear, warm embrace, and heartfelt laughter . . . you will be painfully missed.
Alles Gute. All is indeed well, for you are dancing in heaven with our loving, sovereign Savior.