Saturday, June 12, 2010

Pillars of Strength

Todays post is dedicated to Pillars of Strength. Maybe that should be a layout title....  I have posted so much about Marv these past months, but as you know, behind every good man is a greater woman. Carol has been amazing through all of this. She was dedicated to her wedding vows..."in sickness and in health" to the very end. Carol is an amazing woman, and I could not count how many times people said that to me yesterday. I heard words such as: unbelieveable, strong, gracious, amazing, beautiful...  I look forward to resuming bible study with her this fall, gathering for worship (although I am sure tomorrow will be difficult, our first Sunday knowing Marv will not be returning to his seat beside us), and perhaps Carol will even join me in the church choir later in the year.

Another man who has inspired me is Dick Hinrichs, Marv's very close friend. The two have been accountability partners for many, many years. First, I want to say that many of you may have prayed for Dick. I had sent out urgent prayer requests for him on one of his last mission trips, when we all thought he was going to die out in the middle of no where with no hospitals available to properly treat him. Obviously, Dick not only made it back, and recovered, but he has continued his mission trips despite a heart condition that worries both his wife and doctor.
Dick was one of the speakers at Marv's life celebration service. For years I have heard Dick call Marv "dad" and I always thought that odd, since both are grandpas. I never new why until yesterday. Marv was an adopted father to many, not just for me and my family, but for people of all ages who perhaps had no loving father growing up. Marv had lots of love to give and he gave it freely.

Another pillar of strength, for my very own family, is my husband Jesse. His faith is so strong, I have not seen him shed one tear, although he fully admits he misses the things he and Marv always did together, i.e. Monday evening bible study, Tuesday morning bible study, for a number of years - a Thursday morning study, and breakfast every Friday. As you can guess, my husband spent a LOT of time with Marv each week. Jesse's father passed away when he was only four, and I can see how Marv became his adopted dad as well. Marv helped Jesse's faith journey to grow as well, and my family has our own stronghold in the Word - my husband. He is steadfast, he is upright, and I admire him for all that he is: gentle, nurturing, loving, and most important, a living example of God's word in action.
And doesn't he like mighty dapper in that suit? As he watches his friend's casket being removed from the hearst, he knows this is not the end. In Marv's words, "there are no good-byes, only see-ya-laters".

I want to thank all of you who have been praying for our family and Marv during his illness. Those prayers have also given me strength, and I am so blessed to have you in my life.

God bless,
Rita S.

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