Last Thursday morning our brother-in-law, David, passed peacefully at his home from a long illness. His wife, Sharon, had nursed him daily for months and endured an amount of stress I cannot even fathom. He leaves two boys, ages ten and six. We spent several days with Sharon and the boys trying to help in any way we could and be supportive.
What struck me is how resilient children can be. All the kids played happily together, as if it was any other weekend visit. Laughter and the normal bickering, and running around the house ensued. The adults dealt with their pain and sadness in other ways; there was plenty of beer, plenty of tissues, plenty of consoling words. I witnessed some touching moments over the course of that sad weekend. Something struck me deep, though.
Max was talking to his cousin Evan:
"Are you pretty sad about your Dad, Ev?"
"You know, his body was just wore out and couldn't hold on anymore."
"But, it's ok, cause he went up to be with Jesus."
"Hey you know what? I got a new pack of Pokemom cards we can trade!"
In the minute it took for those words to unravel on our end of the phone, I realized that kids do know what is going on. They just deal with it differently. They aren't tactless, they are honest. They are blunt, they are sincere. David's body did just wear out and David did go live with Jesus. It couldn't have been said better.