Over the past many years I've received a phone call on January 1st. It's my brother Steve wishing me and my family a Happy New Year. This morning I find myself just staring at the phone. Oh, there are many people I could call today. Family members, friends or co-workers, but it would not be the same.
I know it has been 110 days since he left us, but I still miss him so much. My mind drifts to the call and what it would be like. "How's church going?" "Can you believe the Bengals made the playoffs?" Are you working on a new golf swing?" What are you and Susan going to do today?"
As I shake my head to clear the cob webs of grief and sadness, wipe away a tear or two, I have decided to simply share with him a few things that has happened since he left us.
Stev, the holidays just weren't the same without you. Your chair was empty at Thanksgiving and the couch where you always nap was bare. However, just like you would want, we pressed on. Sonya and I had a life changing visit with Daws and Carmen, they spoke of you and what a great man you were. Sonya, Luke, Tyler and I found and old tape of when we lead a revival together and listened to you sing. Man you were good! I was a little preachy and sounded like a hell fire and brimstone guy, thankfully I have grown from that. Uncle John had all of us over for Christmas dinner. He and Aunt Billie thought a change of scenery would do us all some good. They were right, it was awesome, just wish you could have been there. Jackson got to play in the snow for the first time. He is amazing, so cool and he has a golf game where he can hit a ball on a pivot. He's got one of your swings! Susan, Jen and Charles had a great time in Ohio. They are strong and going to be okay.
The truth is what you taught all of us we will carry into the new year. Your faith was always strong and growing. As the calendar has now changed to 2013, I will cling to a couple of verses that I hope many will hold onto.
Lamentations 3:22, 23 "Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness."
I grasp the fact that each day, week, month and year we have the opportunity for a new start because of the love God. I still miss you my brother, think I will just turn my phone to vibrate today.