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Friday, June 24, 2011

Jessica Ann Hatcher

Life can take unexpected turns when you least expect it.  That is what we experienced
today, as we attended a funeral.  A beautiful 18-year-old young woman lost her battle with cancer.  I did not know this girl, but my Kolby did.  We made the trip to Edmond, Oklahoma as an encouragement to my sister and niece and of course closure for Kolby. 

Jessica Ann Hatcher…I did not know you.  I have never met you, but you have made an impact on my life.  Your short life on this earth had a purpose and you accomplished God’s will.   I am sure you were met with these words, “Well done good and faithful servant.”

The funeral was a combination of great grief, sadness, encouragement, and rejoicing.  It was just emotionally challenging. The family and friends were grieving greatly at the loss of Jessica, yet Christ was lifted up, and stories were told of Jessica’s faith encouraging others to walk with the Lord.  You see, Jessica’s dad spoke. He shared that Jessica led him into a prayer of surrender at her bedside to our great Lord.  Jessica’s life had meaning and purpose.  She was dying yet her concern was not on herself but on her lost dad and friends.  God is using the life of Jessica to encourage my heart to live purposefully for Him.

Jessica’s life counted.  A couple of days before she passed from this life to be forever in her Lord’s presence, she called family and friends together to encourage, love, and say goodbye to them; Just an example to live by.

Her dad made an impacting statement.  I am paraphrasing because I cannot remember the exact words but it was something to this magnitude: “Don’t let it take something like this for you to find your faith.”  The pastor addressed the dad to explain, he had received a great blessing from the Lord.  Jessica was a gift and I am told she impacted several lives. 

A rough count of 42+ people made a profession of faith today at the funeral.  The pastor shared the gospel.  He made a great point.  You don’t come to Jesus to make you happy and to remove your pain.  You come to Him in surrender.  Salvation is a commitment and relationship to the person of the Lord Jesus Christ. 

Jessica lived her life with no regrets.  Family and friends hoped and expected God to heal Jessica on this side of heaven.  God had other plans and His plans are bigger than we could ever hope for.  Yes, life can and will take unexpected turns when we least expect it.  God shows up, changes hearts and glorifies His name among His children.  Thank you Jessica for living your life out before us. You will be missed.


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