I realize we haven't blogged in a long while. It isn't because we don't want to, it's because we don't know what to say. Since our last blog, our little niece has gone to be with Jesus. It is still weird to see myself write that. We miss her terribly and although that part hurts our hearts, it it also a constant reminder that her life and her memory are with us. This blog is not intended to make you sad but I can't skip over talking about this one life that touched the lives of thousands.
We know that Ava is doing better now than she ever was on earth. Even when she was fully healthy. Even the knowledge of this fact doesn't lessen the missing her. It may be because I can't really understand that on this side of heaven but really I think it's because all of our lives were more blessed with Ava in them.
As we continue to mourn this great loss, I think mostly about Luke. I think about how Ava loved him and how excited he would be every time he saw her. I think about how she would help me feed him by wiping his face between every bite of food whether dirty or not. I think about how she would watch TV with him while holding his hand and about how impressively high her voice would get when she would talk to him. I always want him to know her. I always want him to understand how many people got to learn about Jesus because her life was short and not long. I want him to be brave like her.
I have always claimed to believe that God redeems all things. Admittedly, it is harder to stand by that statement when it is truly tested. God has been gracious in showing us a glimpse of how he is and will continue to redeem this hurt. The most recent stats from Josh (Ava's dad) for Ava's memorial service were that 9,000 viewed it throughout 49 countries. 4,000 of those viewed it live either in person or online. I know very few people whose lives have reached that many for Christ. Let alone the life of a five year old. Ava is truly an inspiration.
I have one request from all who have travelled this journey with Josh, Lisa and Noah. It is the best way you can honor Ava. Find out if Jesus is who he said he was. Start there. Allow it to be that simple.
We love you and thank you for every prayer and every word of encouragement.