I am not sure how long I will be able to write, we are expecting a friend in 20 minutes and i am a sloooooow typist.
I just wanted to update all of my friends who have visited this blog in the last few days to see how we are doing.As I write this, I am so aware of God’s peace. I can honestly quote the verse that says He will keep those in perfect peace, whose minds are stayed upon him. That does not mean that there is no sadness, at times I miss Jenna terribly and the tears flow, but I am so aware of my Jesus’s sweet presence surrounding me.
My hubby and the two boys arrived here on Tuesday afternoon. They were flown to Washington via a charter flight the day before (thanks to my sweet sister in law) and managed to get temporary passports within 30 minutes of arriving at the consulate.
Hubby was anxious to see Jenna and we went the very next morning. They showed her to us through a window but hubby begged to be able to go in to her. We were told that since it was a forensics morgue where criminal investigations were being made (law requires a post-mortem on drowning victims here) it would not be allowed. When the inspector saw how desperately he wanted to see her he made a very rare exception. I have a picture of Jenna’s very beautiful, peaceful face, and her daddy stroking her hair and kissing her cheek.
We have seen countless small mercies these last few days. I cannot mention them all, though I wish I could write them down at some point so I’ll remember them. We are grateful that my family had 3 whole weeks in which to come to know and enjoy Jenna. It was a blessing to have my family’s support when she died and Richard happened to be at church when he got the phone call so he had plenty of people around to pray for us and comfort him.
Hubby came out of the shower this morning with the most tender expression on his face and tears in his eyes. He said he was worshipping the Lord when he experienced such a sweet sense of God’s presence. He knew that he was worshipping with the angels, and he saw a brief vision of Jenna dancing before the throne of Jesus like she always used to do here. The more he sang, the more she danced. What hubby didn’t know was that at exactly the same time I was reminiscing about Jenna and remembering how I would dance before the Lord in worship when I was heavily pregnant with her. A lady at our church admonished me that I might harm my baby by doing that but the Lord whispered to me that when I danced, Jenna was dancing in the womb with me. He went on to say that she would grow up to dance before him in worship more than I ever did. I always thought she might become a ballerina or something but at that point I realised she was dancing and worshipping Jesus in heaven.
When hubby told me his vision it was a confirmation to us both that we weren’t just imagining it in our minds.
The last day we spent with Jenna we were sitting outside on the lawn and we watched a pink balloon which must have escaped from a birthday party nearby, floating ever so slowly up to the sky. The Lord reminded me of this afterwards and we will be doing a pink balloon release during her memorial service, allowing people to write a message to Jenna on their baloons if they wish.
The memorial service will be held on Sunday at 4pm SA time (9 am ET) A dear friend will do the worship and the service will be led by a man who had lost his own son a few years ago. We will have a time for everyone to say something if they wish and end the service with the song I quoted in my previous post. We told everyone to dress informally since we want it to be a celebration and not a time of sadness. (Though I am sure we will all shed a few tears) We will be playing a slide show of pictures of Jenna while people come up to share. We will stay here in SA a few more days and fly back with Jenna towards the end of next week.
I need to go now but first I want to post excerpts of an email I sent to friends, as well as hubby’s letter to our church body.
I am so aware of the grace of the Lord carrying us
Hubby has arrived here with us and he is such a comfort to me. He says he was in the aeroplane and had to go to the bathroom to cry. He was sobbing and asking God what it was like for Jenna to be in that pool all alone and the Lord said: “Shhh…I will show you something.” He gave hubby a picture of the angel that went to fetch Jenna…and it looked just like me! I had agonised over Jenna being in there and wondering why her mommy wasn’t coming to rescue her and this was such a huge comfort to me.
I can tell you this: God is good. I am not going to go the ‘what if’ route. I trust Him. I know he allowed something in his wisdom that he could prevent in his power. Already there is such a bittersweet blessing, and so many people are being touched by this.
“Unless a grain of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone, if it dies, it will bring forth much fruit”
I believe that much fruit will come out of this for the sake of the kingdom of God.
Words can not possibly express how much I appreciate all of your care, prayers, and especially love. The tangible warmth of your love has been ,and is, a great strength and encouragement. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
And yes, in all honesty, it is hard, and we are sorely sad, but we are holding onto Jesus, and can honestly say we trust Him, believe Him, and know Him to be a good good God.
So join me and lift up your hearts and hands, letting your precious faith rise up and let’s together declare “blessed be the name of the Lord, you give and take away, and still my heart will say, BLESSED BLESSED BLESSED be the name of the Lord!!
The awesome peace he anointed me with when Sumi first called me yesterday,has not left me, and continually I find myself singing praises to Jesus, and my precious God whose Father heart knows the pain of loss all too well.
So let me encourage you all. Don’t draw back, don’t give way to all those questions and doubts, don’t let your faith and trust fail, I don’t know why either, but Jesus does, and nothing he ever does is for evil, because in Him dwells every good thing, and everything he does is good, because He is good.
Let Jesus come, and in coming to us as a body, let Him find faith in us. Draw ever closer to God who surely loves us deeply and passionately whose plans are always for good.
I have to go now, bless you all.
Please excuse the lack of paragraphs. WordPress is messing with my head tonight.