Always Faithful, Deeply Thankful

Today I got one of those phone calls you never want to get.

It was my mother-in-law, calling to tell me that Jacob’s last remaining grandparent, Papa, had passed away.

It wasn’t totally unexpected – when you’re in your 80s with failing health, it’s sort of inevitable. But it did happen quite quickly, and I was left with a pit in my stomach, dreading the news I had to share.

We went outside to sit in the swing. As we quietly soaked in the sunshine and enjoyed the warm spring morning, I distinctly remember thinking: I don’t really want to say anything. Because once I do, he’s going to hurt.

But the words came out, and I tried to comfort as best as I could. I could see it in his eyes: If only this were two months from today. We’d be there.

Being there. It’s the hardest part of being here. Missed birthdays and funerals. Camping trips and family holidays. We’ve missed so much these last few years… and it is a sacrifice that we do not make alone; it is one those on the other side of the ocean must also make. One they didn’t get to choose.

Most days it is OK. But when you have to give your husband news that his grandfather died, a few short months from when his grandmother passed away… well, it’s the kind of thing that makes me question if this is even worth it.

Immediately I felt very strongly that Jacob needed to go home for the funeral. He didn’t get to attend his grandmother’s, but I didn’t think he should miss another one. He was close to his grandpa, and he needs to be with his family; to feel like he’s still a part of them. But just a few weeks ago, we bought tickets to go home this summer – our first trip home in a year, and they weren’t cheap. (And as full-time volunteers, we don’t have much money for travel budgets.) Buying those non-refundable and non-exchangable tickets left us feeling a bit queasy, and I knew we weren’t in a position to be able to purchase another one for such a quick trip.

But still I asked, “Do you want to go?” I knew the answer before he spoke… “Yes, but how can we afford it?”

I didn’t know the answer to that, but as I walked back to the office I pleaded with God to make a way.

When I got to my computer, I began looking at possible ticket options, and in the span of about 30 minutes, we had three different people offer to help get him home for the funeral without us ever expressing the specific need to any of them.

God is so faithful. He knew what we needed, and He made provision for it. I’m so thankful right now. Thankful that in 2 short days, my husband is getting on a plane to be with his family. Thankful that God cares about us and meets our needs. It’s going to be hard to be husband-less for the next week or so, but I know God’s taking care of both of us in the best possible way.

PS: They also offered to get me home, but for several reasons, it’s not a trip I can make right now. Just didn’t want you to think that I’m being left out in the cold. 🙂

15 thoughts on “Always Faithful, Deeply Thankful

  1. Once again, God's faithfulness has brought tears to my eyes. I'm so glad that Jacob gets to come home for the funeral. We will be praying for him and the rest of his family. Whether it's “unexpected” or not, it's always hard to lose a loved one…even with the hope of seeing them again one day.


  2. So sorry to hear about Jacob's Grandpa. Blessed to hear that God has faithfully supplied your needs.
    Know that we are praying for Jacob and his family, and for you as well.
    See you in a couple weeks.
    Blessings to you.


  3. oh Carrie ~

    I'm so sorry to hear about the loss of Papa. I'm sure it is especially difficult for Jacob, and I can see how times like this tear at your heart and make you wonder “if it's all worth it?”

    God's faithfulness always amazes me. He provides a way when there seems to be no way. And I'm so glad that Jacob can be there to spend this difficult time with his family. Loss is always hard, even when we know it isn't far away.

    Praying for safe travels and for God's grace to comfort and sustain each of you during this time of loss.


  4. Loved this… and prayed for you (what a good idea to get the prayers flowing via internet; we should all be doing it!


  5. Oh Carrie, I am so sorry about Papa passing away before your trip home this summer. But how cool that so many prayers are being lifted up and that a way home for Jacob has come to you guys too–even without asking publicly. God heard your hearts and knows so well what is needed. What a way for God to show his care for your family. It will be good for Jacob to have time with his family and I wonder if his presence may not be just for him but even more for others in his family to lean on his strength and wisdom. I am sorry you will not be traveling by his side on this trip however. Hopefully you will be home yet this summer though! Stay strong and lean on God … he's listening.
    We are keeping you all in our prayers, especially now.
    Send a big hug


  6. I'm sad for the loss you are both experiencing and thankful for your ability to see God's provision in the midst. I am pretty sure you do not want to hear this either, but THANK YOU BOTH. You are serving on my behalf with the little ones. On behalf of my Jesus and on behalf of me as a believer. Thank you for the little and big sacrifices – especially the ones that no one may know about.


  7. So sorry my friend. I know you miss so much being where you are….I will be praying for both of you and his family. I am so thankful He took care of your situation so quickly:)


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