I've begun my day in the one way everyone dreads.
With a wake-up call from a very dear friend that her mom has (somewhat unexpectedly) passed away this morning. I sat with her as she journeyed home from her work to her house so she could be driven to her home town where her parents still reside. I was without words, full of prayer, and wishing more than anything that I could reach through the phone and just hold her as I cried with her from several hundred miles away. My heart aches, my whole being is prayerful. I'm saddened and confused... and I feel her pain. She is too young to lose a parent, and there are no words that can change that or make it feel better.
No matter how many times we lose people we love, no matter how many times you are a friend or colleague or pastor - it doesn't get easier. My one prayer, that I hope you can join me in, is that the God who gives us life will continue to be with and wrap Her arms around those who are mourning and suffering and in need in these days. And that those I lift up today- my friend and her family- will feel that presence and be strengthened and encouraged by it.