Her name means Hero of Grace.
Baby girl would be 32 today. I imagine she’d be a mix of my other two daughters—beautiful, kind, tender hearted, loving, aggressive, God loving—an amazing vibrant woman.
30 years ago I held her for the last time. Sometimes it seems like yesterday.
After she died I wanted another baby so bad, my arms literally ached. One year later I gave birth to a beautiful baby boy. It was then I realized, each child has their own space in my heart. He had his place and it was overflowing. Haylie’s place was still empty. Over time I learned to let Jesus fill this space in my heart.
Today, August 11th, I woke up to that tug of emptiness. Come Jesus.
As I sipped my cup of tea, I reflected on her and the last 30 years—I cried. I am always amazed that there are those moments that I still cry. But then, sweet Jesus reminds me of that place in my heart owned by her. And whispers “it’s okay.”
I am honored that I was chosen to be her mother. This “Hero of Grace” swept through my life and changed me forever. And I am grateful.
The three most dominant things that were gifted to me by her life and death are:
One: The awareness that everyday—every person—my family, is a gift to enjoy to the fullest. I never know about tomorrow, so I won’t waste today.
Two: Only Jesus can fill and heal my empty brokenness.
Three: To live with passion against the enemy of my soul. After Haylie died I was angry at God. I saw myself shaking my fist at Him. In His faithfulness He addressed my anger. He gently said “Why don’t you shake your fist at your enemy, where it will do you some good.” Since then I am beyond passionate to stand in faith for what I believe in, to fight for my family’s destiny and not give in—not one inch, to the plan of darkness that comes to kill, steal and destroy.
In so many ways I have been given beauty for ashes.
Isaiah 61:3 says
To comfort those who mourn
To give them beauty for ashes
Joy for mourning,
Praise for heaviness;
They will be called trees of righteousness—the planting of the Lord, for His glory.
Look at all this beauty—all these trees! Thankful, I am.
Today please be encouraged to seize the day! Hug your kids, hug your parents! Tell them you love them! And please give Jesus every empty place in your heart. Lastly, stand in faith for your family’s destiny—it’s worth it!