Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. 2 Corinthians 1:4
September 11, 2001. We were in the States for our first medical furlough and a few days before Randy had finished his final treatment for thyroid cancer. Our friend, Dr. Siemer, came by as I stood enjoying the beautiful September morning. He told us that something was happening so we went inside and turned on the TV. I was on the phone with my sister as we watched the second plane hit the towers. We sobbed together and I hoped Randy would come home soon from his early morning dental appointment. I was thankful my Madrasta was safe as her flight for that same morning was cancelled. The next few months we grieved. Grieved as a nation. Grieved as individuals.
September 10, 2003. We were in Minnesota as I recovered from tumor surgery. It was a beautiful evening at my father's and we had just finished having a lovely meal with some of their friends out in the back yard. The phone rang as I came in the door with a plate in my hand. I answered and my mother-in-law told me that Eddie our son had died in a terrible car accident. I dropped to the floor and cried, "Eddie's gone. Eddie's gone." Randy took the phone from my hand as I heard Christa run back outside and my Madrasta to comfort her.
September 9, 2004. It was early morning in Okinawa when the phone rang. Randy was down getting a shower. Pastor and Mrs. Don Noonan from Rochester, MN, were visiting from Minnesota for a preaching conference. I answered the phone and it was my sister-in-law Shelly. She quietly told me that Randy's brother Chris had passed away. I remember telling her that I could not tell Randy, she would have to do it. I knew his heart was going to break. At Eddie's funeral the year before, Chris and Randy had finally reunited after many years estranged. In February, Chris called to tell Randy that he had gotten saved. Our grief for Eddie still seemed so fresh and now my husband would have to add this.
September 11, 2001 was an awful day. The days Eddie and Chris were transferred to Heaven were difficult for those of us that remained on this earth. Today many will pass into eternity somehow. Maybe through an accident, or cancer, or a bomb, or by murder, or a stroke, or ____. You fill in the blank. They will leave behind those who grieve. One thing that I learned through my grieving process was to look for someone I could help. After all, I wasn't the only one who had buried a son, a mother, and a brother-in-law. May we remember those days and the people that helped us get through them. Then let's put our grief into action and help somone else get through their day of sorrow. Look for someone to comfort, someone to help, someone to encourage.