Monday, April 13, 2009


Easter was wonderful this year. I had planned on sharing more from our honeymoon, but Easter takes precedence. Wednesday I will share more pictures and info from our sweet honeymoon in Hilton Head, SC.  
My girls and kiddies were home and we all enjoyed Easter worship at Southside Assembly. The choir shared a powerful musical with inspiring testimonies of Christ's redemptive work. There were few dry eyes in church. 

I preached a brief message at the end of the choir presentation and had Jennifer read an excerpt from her blog that I have posted at the end of this post. She wrote it this past week after coming home to our house for the first time since their Mom passed. Her words are pointed and powerful and give new meaning to the victory of Easter. There were few dry eyes when she shared, but her words gave new hope and faith to many who had lost loved ones in recent days and months. Christ is alive! His life gives us hope for eternal life in heaven. 

Saturday night Nana Wanda helped the kiddies paint Easter eggs and prepared the most delicious Easter dinner. After church and Sunday dinner, the kiddies had an egg hunt in the back yard. They all had a blast and really liked the Easter baskets Nana Wanda prepared. They were all charged up from high intake of sugar. I call it hyper-plus. 

Later before Julie and her boys had to leave to return to Tampa, all of us went together to the cemetery for the girls to place Easter lilies at Kristy's grave. Wanda went with us too. Standing at her grave on Easter gave amazing peace and hope. Christ's victory is our victory. He paid the price for our sins on Calvary, but His Resurrection became the first fruits of our resurrection and eternal life. The sting has been taken out of death. We know there is a life to come.


Here is a picture of Kristy's grave marker where we all went to the cemetery. Kristy is not there. She is in heaven!


Where have I been?

I'm sorry I've just disappeared!

April has been very busy. I've been preparing for VBS, and working on Sunday school stuff. Plus the daily doings of a busy household with small children.

Now I'm in Tampa with Javier and the kids. My dad got married to Wanda on Friday. We arrived late Wednesday night in Tampa and on Thursday before the wedding we drove to Brandon and met Wanda and Paige, her four year old granddaughter.

I wondered how I would feel seeing my dad and Wanda together for the first time. You know what? It felt completely natural. I knew I would like Wanda but I just wondered how it would feel to see them together. There is something about Wanda that is comforting, warm, and a calming love you can feel.

There is much I want to share about the wedding, but I will have to come back later and write more.

Saturday we went to Jacksonville and went to my dad and now Wanda's home.

Dread filled my heart. I didn't want to go inside, but running away solves nothing. What else can one do but push forward? What was I dreading, you might wonder. Honestly, it had nothing to do with the changes. Simply put, that doesn't bother me. It had nothing to do with Wanda. It feels comforting and right that she is there. It was only about the fact that my mother wasn't going to be opening the door, waiting for me.

It was HARD. Harder than I thought to be there. Had I not had two small children and a husband there with me, I would have jumped in the car and driven straight to my mom's grave. Every fiber of my being wanted to fling myself on her grave and dig her out, screaming, "you're not supposed to be dead to us. Don't you know you're supposed to be in your house?"

I've never felt so angry about her being gone, her spirit so far away, so untouchable in heaven. I wanted her 
home. Greeting us in her kitchen. I could see her smile, imagine what she would say and do.

There were many bitter, angry and depressed tears. I haven't grieved like that before. I know where my mom is, my heart is set on the place where she is, my eyes focused on the goal of one day getting there myself. But Saturday's tears boiled down to pity.
I don't regret those tears or letting myself grieve like that. I know God understands and gave me the space to just simply be human.

But you know what, one can't stay in that frame of mind long. It's a dangerous, dark place that pity, depression and anger leads you. They beckon with their cold, sharp 
tentacles. Desperate to wrap pity around one's mind and it's a horrible trap.

Thank God for His mercy and LOVE that are stronger... that are more powerful... and more wonderful than one can imagine. Thank God for His HOPE that is fresh... that flows like river... that fills your heart and gives life!

Sunday was a new day and I woke feeling... released, renewed and refreshed. Ready for a bright new future. Worship at Southside Assembly was wonderful! I went with Jesus by my side and praised my God just steps away from where my mother's coffin once held her earthly shell. I raised my hands in VICTORY because death didn't win! Through Jesus, there is eternal life. I smiled knowing in heaven my mom was dancing along with me! I felt like I was smiling with her, knowing a wonderful secret!


  1. Sunday service was AWESOME! Thank you!

    God Bless,
    Kevin & Tamatha Jones

  2. Jennifer,
    I've been there and understand. But God is good and He brings healing.

    Your testimony touched my heart very deeply.

    And congrats to Milton and Wanda. May God bless your years ahead as you serve Him.




  4. Wonderful post, but on a technical issue, Milton please don't wrap the copy around the photo. Too hard to read. Blessings!

  5. Beautifully written, Jennifer. And so honest. That's what readers want. Thanks for not holding back your feelings. As you said, God understands. Yes, He does ... and so much more than we can even imagine.

  6. jennifer,

    thank you for sharing this part of your blog...i know how hard that was for you....i remember the same feeling walking into my moms house the first time without her and i felt the same way...but, our God is loving that he helps us HEAL from that pain...thank you for sharing....

    In Gods Love