Saturday, July 17, 2010


I am happy, but I have an underlying sad feeling today. A young couple's little 18month old girl who fell in a canal last Saturday passed away yesterday. Her story is incredible and frightening and the fact that she lived for six days is an amazing miracle. My heart is broken for them.

It brings a lot of the sad feelings we've experienced lately to the forefront again. Chad and I keep looking at Brinley who is the same age as their little Preslee and we can't help but hold her and kiss her and just stare at her. We keep checking on the girls while their sleeping before we go to bed ourselves and end up bringing them to bed with us just to hold them and be near them. We love them so much. I can only imagine what the Sullenger family is going through right now and it literally makes my heart ache for them.

We pray for them a lot even though they're strangers. And somehow we love them even though we don't know them. I keep feeling myself trying to say that it doesn't really matter so that maybe I won't feel the ache for them, but it does matter and even though I don't know them, I do love them and because I love them I will ache for them, for their loss, for their heartache, for their pain.

It's made me think of what it means to love someone, even a stranger, to the point that it hurts. It's made me think a lot about how the Savior loves us; how Heavenly Father loves us.

"Beloved, let us love one another; for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God. and knoweth God....In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him....Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another."
1 John 4:7,9,11

They loved and continue to love each of us so perfectly it's painful.

I heard this in a talk I was listening to the other day by Bruce C. Hafen called "The Disciples Journey". He was speaking of Elder Maxwell when he said, "The more he desired to have the gift of charity, to love as Christ loves, the more he sensed how dear the price might be. To love as Christ loves means we will somehow taste suffering ourselves. For the love and the affliction are but two sides of the same coin. Only be experiencing both sides can we understand and love other people with a depth that even approaches Christ's love."

So for now I won't try to ignore the ache or play it off, but I'll work through it with the hope that somehow it means because of my own heartaches my heart has become a little more willing and able to love so painfully. I hope when all is said and done that I will truly be able to love one another as Christ loves no matter the cost.

7 comments:

Becca said...

I know how you feel. A family friend of my parents little girl drowned in their hot tub a year ago (maybe 2 years now). She was around the same age. It was tragic and I still find myself crying about it. If you want to read her blog, it's super inspiring.

adailyscoop.blogspot.com

Mandy Lou said...

Van, I just love ya! Hugs and of course a schmmackk!

Tricia said...

I know what you mean, and our baptismal covenants come to mind. We are commanded to mourn for those that mourn and comfort those that need comforting. Sometimes they are strangers so it is hard to give them the comfort other than through our own prayers for them. It has been years since I've seen the two of you, yet I still felt sadness and mourning after Alan's death. I love reading your blog. You are a great writer and really help me think about important things.

Karrianne said...

there are fliers up a few places in Pocatello about that family. It just broke my heart when I read what happened to the little girl! I didn't know she had passed away.

I pray that family can have peace and comfort. I cannot imagine the heartache they must be feeling. I count my blessings every single day that I still have all my children safe with me.

Brittany Hepworth said...

We've been following her blog too. Dane and I were both heart broken when we found out that Preslee had gone home.

I can't imagine what they are feeling and going through. We only pray that they can heal, and find peace.

I love your deep words. I love your spiritual and uplifting thoughts. They always stir my thoughts and make me think and feel too.

proudmamablogga said...

Yes it sucks to be empathetic. but I wouldn't give it up either. it doesn't always have to be happy, but you have had enough heartache for one summer.

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