Oh man. I was deeply saddened late last night to hear of Andrew & Debbie Jones's situation in Africa. They were both seriously ill. Then this morning I read where Debbie did, in fact, pass away.
These are people I never knew in person. We weren't friends or anything. I had met Andrew once, maybe twice. He was actually the first person of any notoriety who commented on this little blog of mine. He was like the king of blogging at the time - at least in Christian circles. I read his blog everyday, and was heavily influenced by him.
Anyway, they've been living a nomadic lifestyle for many years now. Missionaries in its purest form. I've not heard any of the details yet, but the news is weighing heavy on my heart. I'm wondering, when you've dedicated your lives to serving God and people, how do you recover from something like this? I know people do, or at least they move on, but.... I don't know. My heart mourns for Andrew and his children.
Also in the news recently was the little boy dragged away and killed by an alligator in Florida. Jane and I were talking about it last night. How in the world are these parents supposed to recover from seeing their 2 year-old snagged by a gator, pulled under water, and not be able to do anything about it? I think it was Jane who noted they may not ever recover. I don't see how they could.
So, of course, you know me, I started thinking about my own recovery process. A couple months ago I made yet another attempt at reconciling with some of the people at my former church. Still, there was no response at all. I mean, it's been what... 3 years, and they absolutely refuse to speak to us, listen to us, or have anything to do with us. I was actually trying to apologize, and lamenting the fact that I miss this person's friendship. But I did mention that I didn't know if I would ever get over what happened. So I suppose they took that as some kind of slap. I didn't mean it that way - I don't think.
The truth is, I'm pretty sure I still haven't recovered, and I don't know if I ever will. Which is sad on my part, I know. I mean, plenty of people have gone through much worse than what I/we went through and they seem to. You hear horror stories of people in ministry and some folks are actually able to laugh about it later. So why can't I? Well, maybe, just maybe, I'm not supposed to. Maybe we never really do recover from things, and that's what steers us along life's path and shapes us into who we are. I don't know.
I don't much care for the shape I'm in. And that's about all I've got to say right now.
"You were running a good race. Who cut in on you to keep you from obeying the truth? That kind of persuasion does not come from the one who calls you." (Galatians 5:7-8)
"Lord, I'm tired. So tired from walking..."
One of my favorite songs, from David Crowder (All I Can Say):