A Hope that Fills the Vastness of the Sea

From James:

Today marks one year after So Young went to heaven. She is much happier now than she was here with us, but her time on earth was punctuated with sweet moments of joy, whether it was hours spent enjoying her girls or solitary moments of gratitude for what God had done for her. Here’s a journal entry So Young wrote that I found recently. It was written after her brain tumor diagnosis. It shows so many things about the So Young we knew for the short time she was here: her love of God and understanding of his character, her gratitude despite suffering, and her persistent heart for people who don’t know Jesus.

This year, So Young is going to miss some important birthdays: Audrey’s 10th, Lindsay’s 13th, Shannon’s 16th, and my 40th. Loss isn’t a single event but many lifetimes of reminders of absence, all of us missing, all of us grieving, all of us remembering. We’ll never forget you, So Young. Until we see you again… 

Overcome with emotions this morning. It’s 4:30 a.m., and you’ve called me downstairs to pray — prayers of intercession, prayers of thanksgiving. Overwhelmed at the kind of God I serve and love, who loves me. So thankful that my family sleeps peacefully upstairs, but more than anything, grateful that we are all saved. A household of true believers. It’s something to cry about. Lord, you are too good to me, to us!

Praying especially for the lost. Anyone of us could lose our physical lives at any moment, but if Jesus has saved us, we live with an immeasurable hope, a hope that fills the vastness of the sea. No — more!

Praise God I could read what I’ve written and was able to see the song list on the iPod. Amazed!


So Young with a very tiny Audrey


9 Responses

  1. I have though often about you and your daughters this past year. I have prayed that you would experience the emotional healing which is so critical for you as a dad and a human being.

    As the milestone of So Young’s one year anniversary has now come and gone, I am convinced that she would want you to continue to celebrate her life and honor her memory by facing your uncertain future boldly and joyfully.

    May the Holy Spirit bring His fruits to your life in wondrous ways as you and your daughters move forward in your lives together.

    Pax Christi

  2. I still miss my best friend every day. Still have fleeting thoughts of picking up the phone for one of our mid-morning conversations. Although God has blessed me with several happy moments this year and I am continually overwhelmed by His grace in so many ways, there’s a sad place inside that is always aware of her absence even as I am thankful for all those years of memories and totally grateful to know that So Young is rejoicing in heaven.
    As I’ve watched this day approach on my calendar, I have thought so much about life and death, friendship, Jesus, mourning and hope… I am convinced now more than ever that — as So Young always used to say — God is good, all the time.
    James, thanks for sharing So Young’s journal entry and this beautiful happy picture. As always, your words are perfect, beautifully expressing the journey of loss. I continue to love and pray for you and your girls from afar and look forward to seeing you all again soon.

  3. Dear James,
    I woke up this morning thinking of this Special Day. How precious are her words and the strength of her faith passing on to others even now. So Young is beautiful and passes such a sweet legacy.”But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep.” We will see her soon.

  4. A wonderful tribute to So Young.

  5. I don’t think a day has gone by that I haven’t thought of So Young. What a tremendous loss. She was a wonderful woman who put God first. It is so evident that she was an awesome mom who always put her kids above herself. So selflesss and so rare. Just like her running nickname, Ruby. The definition: ” Ruby is distinguished and known by all for its fiery red color. Beside for its color, it is a most desirable gem due to its hardness, durability, luster, and rarity. Transparent rubies of large sizes are even rarer than diamonds. Transparent, flawless rubies exceed all other gems in value (except for deeply colored “fancy diamonds”).” So true. I love you sis. We will see you again soon.

  6. It’s great seeing her in this pic and reading her journal.

  7. Thank you James for posting So Young’s journal entry. She is so often in my thoughts especially when I go running or pass by our favorite trail. I miss her. May God continue to bless you and the girls in your new journey. Peace.

  8. SoYoung and you, and then others who personally know Christ and love your family taught us to be closer to God… What the impact you had on us who follow your journal… We thank God for witnessing steadfast faith and love for God and each other through this trial.. May our Lord continuously give you strength and peace, and a reminder that He is with you ALWAYS!

    Grace Kim

  9. Thank you, James, for marking this day and helping us all to remember.

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