1987 – 2005 – Eternal Home
Mike was the same age as our youngest daughter, and they and his little sister played together every chance they had. They were like three siblings as they made a playhouse in the trees behind our house, dug rocks out of the ground to watch them roll down the hill, yelling, “AVALANCHE!” as they rolled, played in the sprinkler in the garden, and played board games inside the house. They never lacked for something to do.
Mike’s family moved next door to us about the same time our son left home. Mike was natured so much like our son that I felt as though he had stepped in to take his place. He enjoyed discussions about science, history, politics, literature, and theology. Our son was the same way when he was growing up.
On the evening of October 31, 2005, Mike was involved in a terrible car wreck that claimed his life. He was only three weeks from his 18th birthday. How could an honor student, excelling in science and math, active in his church, kind heartedly helping tutor other students who were having difficulties in school, be gone, just like that? He was exemplary in every way, funny, tender, honest and loyal, reaching for purity of soul as much as strength of character. My heart literally ached with pain that night and has never stopped aching emotionally since. We miss him, and every year when October turns on its golden charms and the nights are cool and days are short, my heart chills at the reminder of that awful night when Mike died.
As tragic as Mike’s death seems, I thank God for the work of Jesus on the cross so Mike could be included in His family. It certainly takes the sting of death right out of our grief. I’m so grateful that Jesus had Mike’s mansion all prepared for him, for He knew he’d be an early arrival. That right there means all the world to all of us who grieve for Mike.
“Please Jesus, will You sit down and have a good long discussion with Mike about how weather happens, and why friction creates heat, and how the big bang theory ever got dreamed up in the first place – and why, oh why, are people still believing it? He’ll want to talk about Republicans and Democrats and Baptists and Mennonites, and why snakes don’t have legs and what makes a smoke bomb smoke. And, can you also tell him Miss Jewel put You up to it because she misses those good long talks herself?”