You know, life sometimes just throws circumstances at us that we have no control over. That certainly was the situation when the realization hit us that we were going to have to plan another memorial service for our second son in just a 5 month time period. Plus little Bryan’s passing had been expected (Peacefully Passing Into God’s Arms), Matthew’s had not.
The coroner’s report on the reason Matthew died? It read as follows: “SIDS???”
What did that mean? Our son was 2 years-old! Didn’t SIDS just happen to infants?
The coroner explained that it was very unusual, but he had seen children up to 5 years of age die from SIDS. He also told us he could find no other logical finding as to why Matthew had died – he was healthy and strong.
But, of course, we knew. God had called our little boy home.
I was so thankful that Gary’s sister Linda came with us to the funeral home to pick out the casket and plan the wording for Matthew’s service brochure. She was a “take charge” type of gal, and quite frankly Gary and I were both walking around in a fog.
But then all of a sudden, the wording of one sample brochure jumped out at us:
Don’t grieve for me, for now I’m free; I’m following the path God laid for me.
Such a perfect statement for our little boy (The Purity of a Child’s Heart)…
We had decided to bury little Bryan’s ashes with Matthew’s body – two brothers together for eternity. Not far from where we lived we found a beautiful cemetery that overlooked the valley. They had a special section for children, with angels surrounding it. We knew this was the place.
The day of the service came, and our church was packed. I was in zombie-mode. Why did all these people come? Some of the people there we hadn’t been in touch with for years! Yet we were thankful.
Our precious friends on the worship team gathered together and did a very special set of songs for us, along with short testimonies. Sometimes I actually found myself laughing out loud – before the tears would come pouring out all over again.
Almost everyone at the church followed us out to the grave site. It was a cold, windy day – typical of a Seattle day in February. We all gathered around the little grave site, and our precious pastor said more kind words about our Matthew.
But then something miraculous happened…
The wind stopped, and the sun started to peek its head out of the clouds. The temperature also rose – I wasn’t nearly as cold as I had been a few minutes before! Yet surely it must have been my imagination.
However after the service one of our elder friends came up to us and smiled, saying, Did you notice it? Did you notice that all of a sudden it warmed up and the wind stopped?
It had not been my imagination after all! I knew in my heart that this was my Heavenly Father speaking to us, giving us comfort and reminding us that He was in control after all, and He loved us very much.
Even now as I write about this I can remember it so clearly. And I’m so thankful for my Father taking the time to reach out to all of us with the beauty of His sun, and the warmth of His presence. Nothing escapes Him – ever!