Remembering Jessica

A nightmare has been lived out this past week here in Athens, Alabama--during Christmas, that no family or friend should have to experience--the pain of losing a child. Precious Jessica Michelle Elkins was a light and joy to so many people. We always loved having her at our home. I always admired her good manners! She and my Caroline were best friends during their middle school years while they cheered together.

Jessica contracted what is believed to be bacterial meningitis. The violent attack to her body happened so fast and she is gone now almost like the snap of a finger, but we've been through the "slow motions" of hospital visits, prayer vigils, not believing that this could happen to one of our kids. But it did. She has gone on at age 15 to be missed by her loving family and huge number of friends....so hard to understand....So incredibly sad.

But we have to let our faith pick up from here--the point at which we have no understanding. We can be comforted and strengthened in the scripture Romans 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

We can't always know what good comes of bad things like this. But it's there! We have to believe it. I know that it was "good" to be at a prayer vigil with a hundred or so of Jessica's friends praying with them. I know that it is good that several of these friends are growing in their faith and understanding of God and death. That is good. Jessica has donned her wings, and will live on in our hearts--that beautiful girl.

This is Robyn, Caroline and Jessica tubing on the river last summer behind Whitney's boat. What fun that was! I can still hear their squeals of laughter...

This is Jessica and Caroline at Cheer camp several months ago.

Anyone reading, please pray for the Elkins family. Jessica leaves behind her loving parents, an older sister and a younger brother. Coping with something like this can only happen with God's mercy, love, comfort and prayers.

Read about bacterial meningitis and know the symptoms. It is a very fast progressing illness that needs immediate attention. May you be blessed!
As a side note, it might be a good time to mention a great book that will comfort those about Jessica. If you'll read at least the first 3 chapters of this book, you will see the marvelous place that awaits all believers and the place where Jessica is now. She is smiling and more radiant than ever! The book is "Ninety Minutes In Heaven" by Don Piper.