Never have I met someone whose eyes flashed with such life, mischief, zest and joy, welcoming, compassion and impishness all at once.
it’s funny how nervous i felt about meeting you. You showed me the beauty of community… see, I knew that the family lived in community, but had never seen anyone living with them ’til you got back from overseas.
And then i saw how beautiful it was.
I got to see how community can be family. I watched while you casually made yourself a thai salad and flopped your exhausted body into the corner of the couch, pulled up your knees, and eagerly drew the two people in the room into conversation.
You laughed an explaination about how you always seem to have the conversations “that matter” at night. I totally understood… and connected with that. My whole life seems to have been like that. What is it about darkness that seems to strip away our inhibitions and qualifiers and shed light on subject matter!?
And then i watched as you opened up your heart and allowed it to be ministered to in community… as you talked about God and salvation and faith and Christians and churches and wounds and joys…
So natural, and so foreign to behold!
and how quickly you drew me in to your life. A girl who had just uprooted her life and moved to a city where she knew only one person.. you invited me into yours.. we watched movies on your bed together and drove all over the place together after your car accident.
Even that spoke of an incredible character… most people are reluctant to accept help from someone in the “awkward newness” of a relationship like ours was. you humbly, gratefully accepted, and it was an opportunity for our friendship to grow dramatically.
You showed me community, in becoming part of one yourself and allowing yourself to be ministered to… loved, and drawn into family…
and you showed me community in the way that you lived your entire life.
The way that you drew me in, sought to love me, accepted my love and dubbed me Buzz Lightyear… gratefully welcoming me into your life, is not something that was unique to me… That was how you treated all your friends and acquaintance! Your passion and zest was not just for life and adventures, but was for people.
you lived relationships. sometimes they tired you out. Sometimes your friends hurt you immensely, and sometimes they just wearied you with constant problems, but always they filled you with a joy and a bursting love for being part of your life. You never shied away from the hard work of relationships and seized every opportunity (it seemed to me) to make sure those around you knew that their lives were a gift to this world.
Thank you for this brilliantly inspiring example of LIVING Love. I think you saw all the people of this earth as your family… and treated them with a love to match.
Thank you for showing me that love is alive and strong and that community is NOT dead and can exist beautifully among people, and within individuals.
The world, and our lives, have a gaping hole where you once were. Your laughter will long ring in our ears and your smile will not soon be forgotten. Happy Birthday… What a gift God gave this world when He gave you life 23 years ago!