Friday, November 26, 2004

While Everyone's Going Home, A Homegoing

I had an amazing Thanksgiving, but for the most unexpected of reasons. The holiday weekend really started Wednesday night. Angel, the boys and I went to see The Incredibles -- which is an awesome movie I would highly recommend to anyone! We went to the 9:30 pm showing and got out just before midnight, so that was a COOL way to end Wednesday...

Yesterday, we met with both sides of our family, which was nice. We enjoyed each other's company, had food together and got caught up on each other's lives. I'm really glad we were able to do that.

We ended up over at one of our First Light bandmate's house on Thansgiving evening. Most of the rest of First Light members were there, too, and we ended up singing a few First Light songs for some relatives of one of our bandmates...which, again, was fun.

Then there was a phone call that changed the whole evening.

One of our sisters in Christ, whom we all knew and loved, had passed away this Thanksgiving. She was not old. She had not died in a car accident. She and her husband (they're an interracial married couple) had recently gotten back from missionary work in Belize, Central America, where our church has a sister church. Upon their return, the husband had gotten sick but eventually recovered but the illness had persisted in his wife. They were visiting some friends from church when she decided to get some rest because she wasn't feeling well. She went to sleep and never woke up.

When we got the news, we were shocked but we were also immediately happy for her because, as one brother put it, "the scriptures are fulfilled" that she fell asleep in Christ. Hers was by no means a terrible death; our sadness was for her husband and ourselves, who will miss her on the Earth. Our whole church will be giving support and love to her husband to help him in this time of need.

But after learning this news and speaking about it for a few minutes, First Light began to sing songs to the Lord, in honor of our sister in Christ and the glorious encouragement she gave to us all by completing a life that was free from willful sin. Only the leader of the band had his guitar, so most of us just sang -- but we sang with all we had! There were tears and some "cracked notes" from emotion but the emotions were pure and they were beautiful. I will admit I cried as we sang "I Exalt Thee." Everyone was choked up, some cried freely, but they were tears of joy, not sadness...and the Lord deserved (and deserves) all the honor and praise and so much more. We sang hymns and original First Light numbers -- but in a way we had never sang them before. Obviously, this was not in front of an audience -- just ourselves, those in the house and, most importantly, the Lord.

It definitely goes down as my most memorable Thanksgiving...and I'm thankful for it.

Best Wishes,

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