Since today is my birthday, it's one of those occasions that cause reflection.
Since my husband and I are on a three day quick roadtrip to celebrate both our birthdays, we've had quite a bit of time in the car driving between our destinations; which has given me time to think about the past year of my life.
Last year on my birthday, I was recovering from surgery to remove cancer from my thyroid that I had had five days earlier. The next day I was to have another surgery as the type of cancer I managed to get, could spread and grow in other places.
I had a terrible sore throat; much like the worst case of strept threat you could imagine, and I was facing another surgery that would leave a scar from the top of my earlobe to the middle of my neck.
So you probably can get the reason why this was probably the least favorite birthday of my life.
The evening of my birthday I received a phone call that I will never forget. I probably had numerous phone calls that day, but this call is embedded in my mind because my friend, my birthday buddy, Robby called me to wish me happy birthday and this was the last time I actually talked to him on the phone.
Unfortunately two months later, Robby was gone. His death rocked my world and the worlds of so many people that I love dearly.
Robby was like a son to me; he called me his second mom and I loved him from the moment he was born.
So that is the reason I remember that call. I remember the words we spoke to each other. They were real, they were sweet and they were honest. I won't ever forget them. Although we frequently texted each other , that was the last time I heard his voice.
I will always remember Robby. I look forward to one day spending eternity with him in heaven.
Many happy moments occurred this past year, and I am so grateful for them. I had amazing visits with friends, had countless times of memories with my family. Watched one of my sons marry the love of his life with tremendous joy. I had two absolutely amazing small groups with my girls in Chico, and loved watching them grow more in love with Jesus. We have done quite a bit of living together: good times and hard ones, but we have loved and supported each other. We had another incredible summer at Woodleaf, and as always, the Interns bring such enthusiasm and fun to our summers.
Unfortunately, as I look at the end of one year of my life and start another one, I am again grieving the loss of someone very dear to my heart.
My mentor of the past 36 years went to be with Jesus on Saturday. My dear June is the one person who single handedly influenced my life more than any other. She taught me how to walk thru life as a follower of Christ, in the good times and in the hard, difficult painful times. We shared the joy of my children's births and she was their "Gramma June", and we shared the homegoings of her dear first husband Carl and her sweet son Kevin. So we really went through the gamut together; both life and death.
I know how incredibly blessed my life has been because of June. She was truly a very special gift that God loaned me. She taught me well, so I know I will go on and keep living for Jesus and hopefully encouraging young women as she encouraged me.
So as I realize how quickly time passes now that I am older, I want to savor life each day. I want to have a thankful spirit. I want to notice the moments of everyday that don't seem so special, but really they are. I want to love others well. I want to be an encourager. I want to pray more. I want to cherish the time I have here, until I get to meet the ONE I have waited my whole life for.
In the meantime, I will miss Robby and I will miss June terribly. But oh how blessed I am because I knew them.