I just returned from visitation for a 13 year old boy. Never before have I seen the body of one so young. His parents showed up as we were leaving, and while I have seen people more distraught, they looked very different from the happy-go-lucky types they usually are. They spent 11 hours on their feet for visitation at the funeral home yesterday (hence the late arrival this morning) and have several more hours to go through before the funeral this afternoon. Please pray for this boy's parents and younger sister as they deal with the grief over this tragedy.
I could tell the dad was struggling to hold it together, while the mom had already given up the attempt. She hugged me about three times, and didn't want to let me go. It broke my heart seeing them, even more than seeing their son.
Here is his story, but I won't share names since I am not a family member. He played basketball at the middle school, and had an undiagnosed heart condition. He collapsed during practice Tuesday night and no defibrillator was on hand (donations for one can be made to the school board in lieu of flowers). This boy accepted Christ as Lord and Savior of his life just two years ago, at age 11. Thank God for that. He was very open with his faith and wasn't afraid to tell anyone about it. His parents are confident that his death will bring others to Christ, and that they will get to see him again someday in heaven. Pray that this small community is touched by this, and that others come to know Jesus personally through the amazing witness of this family.
This morning I was inspired to offer them a refuge, and I did manage to tell the mom, who was appreciative of the offer. Because the family's business is just across the street from ours, I told her that when they needed to escape that environment (where the son so often was)that they were welcome to come hide in our quiet office. I hope that they do take advantage of the available privacy so they don't have to lock themselves up in their car to deal with the grief that is certain to keep coming in waves for a long time to come.