Yesterday was a special day for me. I always had a special place in my heart for July 26th. On that day in 1899, my grandfather, Edmund Just was born. And on the day of his 21st birthday, he married his sweetheart, my grandmother Florence. They wee married for almost 60 years. Theirs was a true love story. They raised 8 wonderful children, and had 38 grandchildren...and I have no idea how many great grandchildren. A special day.
I'm afraid not everyone will consider July 26th a happy memory. Yesterday, we received word of a tragedy. One that every parent prays never comes. A sweet young toddler was the victim of a horrible drowning accident. Her family used to live in this area, but moved away to minister to others in another state.
July 26th will mean a totally different thing to this precious family. A day that changed their lives forever. What can you say in a circumstance like that?
Some people try to console the grief stricken family with words that are intended to comfort.
"She is with the LORD."
"She is in a better place."
"The angels came and took her away."
"God wanted her to come and live with Him."
"I know how you feel."
"You have another child"....or the heartwrenching "You can always have another child."
That family does NOT want their child or loved one to be anywhere but with them. They don't want to hear about God wanting her more than they did...and they don't think anyone can know how they feel.
The best thing to do is just be there...and if you cannot...pray for the family. For the most part, there is nothing you could say. No words suffice.
Why do tragic things like this happen? There is no answer. No one knows why. We won't know until we reach heaven. Until then, we lean on each other. Sometimes we are the ones who are doing the holding...other times we are the ones that are doing the leaning. God gave us the people in our lives to support us and for us to support. No (wo)man is an island. We are not meant to live in a cocoon. Hold the ones we love close...for we never know how long we have with them.