Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory He will give us later. Romans 8:18
Within the past few weeks, there have been several tragedies in the lives of people that I know. Each of these tragedies have struck me to my core not only because people that I know are suffering tremendously, but also because all 3 tragedies somehow involve a baby. Having a 7 month old daughter myself, I have had extra empathy. I haven’t quite figured out the best way to grieve or show my condolences for these families, but this blog post is a start…
Jennifer (Swihart) Trapuzzano was a classmate of mine at Avon High School. While we were not real close ourselves, we had many mutual friends and every time I came in contact with Jennifer, she was nothing but kind and genuine. As many of you have seen or heard on the news, Jennifer’s husband, Nathan, was out for a walk on the morning of April 1 when he was viciously mugged, shot and killed. It’s a tragic loss of not only a husband, but also a soon-to-be father, as Jennifer is 8 months pregnant with their first child, a daughter to be named Cecilia. Nathan’s death was completely senseless and left a wife without her husband and an unborn baby without her daddy. The news of this tragedy has spread like wildfire, and thousands of friends, family and strangers have sent donations to Jennifer to provide for baby Cecilia, totaling over $170,000. Nathan had a very close relationship with Christ that he shared every chance he got, and his story has caused many people to turn to Christ themselves. Learn more about their story here.
Jessica (Wager) Broady was also someone who attending high school with me. She was a year older than me, but we had many mutual friends. Jessica was always very upbeat and friendly to anyone she surrounded herself with. On the evening of April 12, Jessica was in a deadly car accident, leaving behind a husband and an 8-month old son named Carson. This sudden tragedy shocked everyone who knew her, and left us all heartbroken. It was very obvious that Jessica absolutely adored her sweet boy, and now the poor baby won’t get to grow up in his mommy’s arms. However, Carson is surrounded with many wonderful family members who are embracing him and loving on him in every possible way.
Jess (Hoffman) Kim is someone I met in college at Indiana University through mutual friends. I only hung out with her a few times, but each time she was extremely pleasant to me. Jess gave birth to twins, Scott and Logan just a few days after I had Kinsie. I always enjoyed seeing pictures and videos of her precious boys on Facebook. At only 6 months old, Scott passed away for unknown reasons. When I heard of this news, I was completely torn apart. I never even met the twins, but the thought of an innocent child losing his life before even a year old is more than I can bare. Jess has set up a website for people to share their thoughts and to honor this sweet boy’s memory.
As a new mother myself, each of these stories has hit close to home. I just can’t even begin to imagine what these families are going through. Not only do I mourn for these families, but I especially pray for each and every one of these children. The main reason I wanted to become a teacher was to make a difference in the lives of children. In my school, there are many students whom were born into broken, unstable homes, or have been placed in unfortunate circumstances through no fault of their own. I just want to take these kids home with me to protect them from their unfair situations. Nothing breaks my heart more than seeing a child suffer, whether it be physically, mentally or emotionally. If I could save every child in the world from any harm or suffering, I would do it in a heartbeat. Life can be so unfair, and we will never understand any of it until we join Jesus in heaven. When I have gone through a tragedy myself, I really struggled with why God would let something like this happen. After many prayers and countless hours with my Bible, I came to the conclusion that God isn’t responsible for bad things happening in our lives. He is incapable of doing evil. Not only is Satan causing corruption in our every day lives and blaming God for it, but we also have been given free will, which in turn causes many terrible things to happen. When God’s children are weeping, He is weeping right along side of us and carrying us the entire way. We just have to let Him.
Cecilia, Carson, and Scotty…
Each of you, being so young, have already suffered a great tragedy. Your lives have not started out, or ended, very fairly. However, you have many people around you that love you so much and would do anything to protect you from harm. Cecilia, your mother is unbelievably strong and has a wonderful faith in God that I’m sure she will instill in you. Even though you never got to meet your daddy, he loved you with all of his heart, and he will always be watching over you along with your Heavenly Father. Carson, you may not remember your mommy someday, but she absolutely adored you. It was obvious in the way that she talked about you and looked at you. Even though she may no longer be here in a physical sense, she will always be with you wherever you go. Scotty, I never got the chance to meet you myself, but I could see through pictures how cheerful and rambunctious you were. Even though you were only here for a short time, you made an impression on so many lives, and you will never be forgotten. Even in the wake of disaster in all three of your lives, you have been blessed by the outpouring of love that people have shown you and your families. You are all so loved, and not only by those here on Earth, but especially by your Heavenly Father. Take comfort in that forever.