Dear ones,

It's taken quite a bit longer to get this letter out than I had wanted.  The last two months have been so full of ups and downs, that time has slipped by like a vapor.

As many may already know, in the first days of January, our little one we were expecting to join us passed away.  We had learned of her problems just days before she left us, bringing on a unique two-stage grieving process: first grieving the loss of the healthy child we had been imagining, then a few days later grieving the loss of the precious needy little girl we had now learned of and loved.

Through it all, the Lord showered us with such grace.  In the midst of confusion and uncertainty, He showed us - bombarded us really – with reminder upon reminder of His Love, Control, and Goodness.  While we miss Eliana Joy (..."Taga Tooter" no longer), we take great delight in the assurance that the same God Who cares for us, takes care of her.   As I recently wrote some friends, it is interesting to observe the role reversal...  That really, she will be the family member welcoming us to our home.  The joy which we had anticipated, will actually be hers.  What a wonderful gift she's been given!

Much thanks to those of you aware of our situation who have kept us in your prayers.  I have no doubt that God's grace to us was in part spurred by the requests of His children.  What a wonderful thing it is to know hundreds of people are bringing your name before the Throne of Grace!  We thank-you also for the many notes of encouragement, gifts, and help which came in many forms.  We're blessed to have so many people who care for us.

Amity is doing well.  Her health is good, and she is doing well emotionally also.  Of course there are many ups and downs for us all, but as a whole things have honestly gone well.  Isaac and Gracie are good too.  They were very whiney and clingy at first, but that wasn't due so much to them being impacted by the loss itself but rather by secondary effects: by us being gone to the hospital so long, by them picking up on our sadness, etc.  But they are back to normal now, and Isaac blows his sister a kiss every night.

I won't say too much more in this message, because I've attached a file that will do a better job.  The enclosure is based on the thoughts I shared at Eliana's funeral, and includes comments that I omitted that day due to time.  (Those who were there are probably amazed -- "You mean, there was even MORE he wanted to say!?" :)  For someone who is typically quiet, I can be rather long-winded when there is something worthy of saying)  I hope those thoughts can be as meaningful to you as they have been to us.

We treasure the time Eliana lived with us (or "in" us!).  And we look forward to the Reunion.  She'd better be saving us good seats before that Throne of Grace...

We hope to see you there!

Aaron, Amity, & family


"And the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. To Him be the power for ever and ever.  Amen." (1 Peter 5:10-11)

( Click here to see the funeral transcript, later published by Focus on the Family )