This picture was taken on 8/7/10-Amanda was 6 years old…
Amanda went home in the arms of Jesus yesterday on 8/6/14. I searched for this sweet picture of her to hold onto while I thought and prayed. When I found it on my computer, I was awed to see that it was taken four years earlier on this exact date. Four years ago, Amanda was 6 years old. Four years ago, none of us had any idea of what lay ahead.
Hearts are broken. There is pain and confusion and there are questions. There is also faith. There is hope. As believers when we speak of hope, it isn’t the kind of hope that is a wish. It is expectance. It is trust. Despite the questions, it is still …knowing that we know that we know.
We know Amanda is well and whole and with Christ in a place of peace and joy and beauty that we cannot imagine. It is also a place of realized purpose.
I see her on a beautiful spring day horseback riding in wholeness and freedom…the wind in her hair. (No helmets needed and no restrictions applied.) She is headed to sit at the feet of Jesus (again) and hear Him tell her about the answers to mysteries we cannot even imagine. They will pray for her mom, dad and Brandon…for her grandparents and extended family and… for her friends. Somehow she and Jesus will have unbridled peace and joy because they will know the whole picture. Eternity will make it only moments before her family comes to join her and she is so anticipating their arrival!
In the meantime her precious family will be working through the pain, will be supported by family and believers who will know how to love them well and will help them through the losses. There are so many losses wrapped up in losing Amanda. This will be a very, very long road.
But because they have chosen to take this journey leaning into our God, there is also this:
1 Peter 1:3-6 (NLT) 3 All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is by his great mercy that we have been born again, because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Now we live with great expectation, 4 and we have a priceless inheritance—an inheritance that is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay. 5 And through your faith, God is protecting you by his power until you receive this salvation, which is ready to be revealed on the last day for all to see. 6 So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you have to endure many trials for a little while.
How often our minds are on you, sweet Watsons. We love you, dear friends…how precious you are to us!