Today, Christmas Eve, at 3 p.m. Ben and I will attend the funeral of a friend's mother. Teri Forrest was admitted to Lexington Hospital a few weeks ago to undergo brain surgery, and this week, due to complications, she passed away.
Late September Ben and I attended the funeral of a friend's mother. Barbara Roy passed away in her home after a long struggle with diabetes related illnesses.
Late August Ben and I attended the funeral of a friend's father. Joe Minor passed away at the hospital after a long struggle with diabetes related complications, just a few short days after the wedding of his daughter (our friend).
We are in our late twenties, a season where, for many, the idea of grieving a parent's death is distant. And yet, over the past four months we've helplessly watched our friend's lives be infused with sadness and grief. With them we talk, we pray, we offer whatever we can imagine will help soften the ragged discomfort.
They say that holidays are especially difficult for those who grieve, and so many times this week, as Christmas draws nearer, these three friends have come to mind. Even though I can't imagine their loss, I still ache. And then, I'm reminded of a Goo Goo Dolls' song, where one simple phrase says "we hope for better days."
So today I pray for these three friends that they will know better days. I pray that God's love and mercy and kindness is more real and tangible to them right now than it has ever been before. And I pray that in the midst of grief, hope will shine brightest. Christmas reminds us that our brightest hope is in the life, sacrifice, and resurrection of Jesus. May these three friends find a way to hold onto that hope.
Merry Christmas and brighter hope for you.