Thursday, June 19, 2008

The Tender Mercies of the Lord

Well, Today I would like to talk about the Tender Mercies of the Lord our family has experienced over the past few days. (If you haven't read the talk by Elder Bednar, click on that link and read it...it's wonderful).
Bart's dad's heart failed on Wednesday, and he passed away. It was a surprise to everyone, and has been very hard, but as we've been talking, we realized all the ways the Lord set this up to be as easy as it could be on us.

First of all, and the one that hit me the hardest, is the fact that if our original Africa trip had not been canceled, we would be in Africa right now. It would have taken us at least a few days to get home...assuming they could even get a hold of us!

Next, Bart's mom was coming back from Moab, so she had spent the night at our house. Bart was up in Ogden at a CTE conference, so he had taken our car. I had been taking Amy's truck to work when she came down to watch Addison in the afternoons. If Maralee hadn't been with me I may not have been able to get up to the Hospital..at least not until the afternoon because Amy would be in work until then and I probably wouldn't have been able to get a hold of her.

In addition, Maralee slept in about half an hour longer than she was expecting to sleep in. If she had gotten up and left at the time she was originally planning to, she would have gotten the news that his heart had failed while she was on the road...not exactly the best state to be driving in.

Zeke was supposed to be released from the Hospital last week, but the doctors had decided to keep him one more week. Had he been released, he would have been at their friends house and it would have taken longer for him to receive medical attention. In addition, Maralee was talking about how they probably would have been blaming themselves for not doing something right. Since he was in the hospital, we know he was getting all the medical attention he needed before his heart failed. The doctors were helping him get back into his bed when he collapsed, so they were there immediately to give him the medical attention he needed. We truly know that everything possible was done in attempt to save him. The Lord had just decided it was time for him to return home.

Zeke was able to go home to Moab for the weekend to celebrate Father's Day. He had an incredible weekend. While at Church he asked a question about the Savior taking on not only our sins, but also our infirmities. Maralee told him that she was sure that he did, but couldn't remember where it said that. Well, Geneava had found the place and given it to Maralee while she was home. Maralee was planning on reading it to him yesterday. Well, when Maralee was telling Sam about this, Sam told us that he had read that exact passage to Zeke the night before. The Lord is so wonderful.

Although we weren't expecting him to die quite so soon, we all had kind of gone through the initial shock of realizing that there was a very high possibility that he would die in the near future, and while it is still hard, I think this has eased the pain somewhat.

There are so many more, but I will leave it at that.

I feel like I have learned some lessons from this as well. Here are just a few.

First of all, the Lord truly is looking out for us and blesses us in so many ways that we can't see or don't understand until later down the road...sometimes maybe never.

Next, never take anything for granted. Although we knew Zeke had a brain tumor, we assumed he'd be around...at least longer than yesterday...you just never know. Always tell your family you love them. If you can do something today, don't put it off until tomorrow. Live life to the fullest TODAY, there's no guarantee that tomorrow will come.

Next, it's a lot easier for other people to tell others the bad news than it is to tell everyone yourself. The phone calls that we received from people giving us their condolences were so much easier than the phone calls we had to make telling people the bad news...If someone you love tells you about a death, tell everyone you can think of that knows them. It's a lot easier to talk to people if they already know and you don't have to break the news to them.

I have also discovered that I have been more sad about the opportunities lost to those he left behind than I am sad for Zeke. I know that he is in a better place. I know that he is free of the brain tumor he had before he left this earth. When I think of where he is now, I am happy for him. What makes me sad is knowing that Addison will never again be able to blow him kisses, or squeal when she gives him five...at least not while she is on this earth. And that the rest of my children won't know him until they too go beyond the veil. But I take a lot of comfort in knowing that we have all been sealed as a family and that we will get to see him again.

Finally, when you are together as a family it makes it so much easier. It's really comforting to be surrounded by loved ones that are going through the same thing as you are. It's so nice to be able to laugh about memories together. Family is so wonderful.

3 comments:

the Ricks said...

Oh, Bart and Rebecca! We are so, so sorry for your loss. I can't even imagine the pain you must be feeling. Please know that you are in our thoughts and prayers. I'm so glad we have the gospel and know that this is definitely not the end of it all. Hey, my grandpa passed away last year and maybe he and Zeke can be mission companions up there!

The Jones Family said...

that post was so beautiful. I truly love the insight and comfort that the Gosepel gives us. Rocky was going to call and talk to Bart Thursday night, but when he spoke to your mom to get the number, she told us the news. We felt we should wait on our phone call (don't worry it wasn't a big deal). We have kept your family in our prayers...though it is comforting to know that we can mourn his passing on this earth (no more high fives from grand kids, etc.) but we're also able to celebrate his life, knowing that we will all be united again someday. so beautiful.

we miss you guys and I especially prayer for Bart...I think one of the hardest passing, is that of a parent.

...Zeke has left behind a beautiful legacy....

Ashley said...

Hey Becca and Bart!!!!

We are really sorry for your loss. We just barely found out yesterday!!! We love you and will be happy to help any way we can, i know that you have lots of people around to help, but i would be happy to help you!!! Love you tons!!!