Friday, January 8, 2010

My heart is heavy. News from Shreveport, where my sweet mother-in-law is fighting ovarian cancer, is not good. It seems Maria may be going to meet our precious Savior soon. Nathan is still in Virginia but will be flying home tomorrow to be with his family.

As I am sitting here tonight, helpless and unable to do anything to change things, I am reminded of some of my favorite memories with Maria.Maria was the first person to ever keep Kaden over night! He was only two months old and I gave her literally 2 pages of "instructions" for how to take care of him! She should have said..."you know, I HAVE done this before"...but instead she smiled and took my instructions!:)

John and Maria were the first ones there after we lost Konner. Maria just sat with me while Nathan and his dad went to make funeral arrangements. She was there to listen and comfort me in one of the darkest hours of my life.
I love watching her and John at Christmas! They always like to go a little over board as far as toys go but the joy in their eyes as they sit and watch their children and grandchildren is priceless. I always loved watching John surprise Maria with Christmas presents...he is a great gift giver...he always picked out the perfect dress or perfume or jewelry. I love that the cards always said "to my sweet Re".

On the day Kolson was born Maria was in the hospital and still called to check in on her newest addition!

But my most favorite memories of Maria, are the everyday ones, the moments when no one else was watching but she still exemplified the fruits of the spirit in every way. Seeing her in the kitchen toting a grandchild while trying to cook and make sure the other grand kids were staying off the stairs, watching her work side by side with John and always being so patient and kind, hearing her talk to friends on the phone and offer words of encouragement, late nights talking with her while Nathan and his dad were out on a donut run, waking up in the mornings only to find her already up with her bible in hand. These are the things I will remember most.

I will be a better wife, mother, and woman of God because I have known Maria.

I have said it before but when I think of Maria I can't help but to think of that song from VBS... but the fruits are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self control. Maria is leaving such a huge legacy...she has touched so many lives and so much of this world will not be the same because of her.

When Maria was diagnosed she was already at a stage 3 or 4. That is the way it goes with ovarian cancer. By the time most women find out they have this cancer it is already too late. In the midst of her battle and most difficult moments John and Maria have started The Maria Lorick Heart of Hope Cancer Foundation. Their hope is to raise awareness for this brutal cancer and to find a reliable early detection test and eventually a cure! Not only is Maria leaving her family and those who know her a legacy, but through this foundation she is leaving a legacy of hope to all the families who may be touched by this cancer in the future.

I know that she is leaving us to go to a better place. A place where she will not only meet the baby she lost years ago, but also her dad, and the babies we lost, but most importantly she is meeting Jesus...her savior. Still, my heart aches. It aches for my boys...I want each of them to know her and to get to see first hand God's light shining through her. I want them to have more camping weekends with her and rides on Papa's EXTREME hayride. I want to talk with her more, and watch her go down the water slide again. I don't understand this, I will be honest, this is not how I would have planned things, but I can honestly say that, even through tears tonight, I know our God is in control. I know we can trust Him. I know that He works even the hardest things out for good. I know that even when we feel like we are drowning in grief and pain He will not let the waters sweep over us. And I trust that even while we are hurting He will quite us with His love and rejoice over us with singing.

As I was listening to this song tonight I couldn't help but think of our sweet Maria. It starts by saying...You're my beloved, You're my bride, To sing over you is my delight, Come away with me my love...
I couldn't help but think how beautiful the sound of our sweet savior's voice will be as it calls her home.
Here is the link to the song...

Please pray for John and Maria and their children and families tonight.


Allison said...

Praying so hard for your family right now--That the Lord will give Maria strength and joy, and give all who love her strength, safety, and peace. Know that we love yall, and are here if you need ANYTHING small or big.

beechembrightspots said...

Jenna, I can't imagine what you guys are going through right now, but I'm here for you even if it's just for a hug and some prayers! Between your blog & Nathan's, I'm just tearing up! Please let us know if there is ANYTHING we can do to help. We love you!

Flo said...

That post is such a wonderful tribute. It's such a hard many emotions. My heart is with you guys.

Stacy said...

Praying for you guys...what a testimony. Much love and prayers for comfort going up for your family.

Jennifer said...

my heart breaks as you all experience such a hard thing. I will be praying for you all.