Friday, December 21, 2012

"I Will Never Have Him Again"

About a year ago, I saw the saddest sight I have ever seen so far in my life. I talk about it a little more in depth here, but it was the sight of a friend carrying his son's casket down the aisle at church, all by himself, tears running down his cheeks, as he carried him outside to the waiting car. My heart broke for this dad and this family, who was now facing life without their precious son. Every painful year, day, minute, and even second, they would feel the loss of this little person who had filled their lives with love and joy. But, the family  said, we know we will see him again. Because of Christ, we know that he will live again.

Last night, while winding down after a long day, I turned on CNN to watch a few minutes of news before bed. Pierce Morgan was talking to the dad of a child who had been killed in the Newtown shooting.

My heart went out to this father, who was so dignified, so compassionate, and yet, at times, the pain would overwhelm his features as he spoke of his little boy. I still get tears in my eyes when I think about his parting words to Morgan about his son. As his face filled with anguish, the dad said: "I will never have him again."

I can't even write these words without crying--the saddest words I believe I have ever heard. I will never have him again. I cannot imagine the pain of believing that your child is lost to you.

I thought about this phrase all night long, wishing I could tell this father that he will see his son again. That, though his body is dead, his spirit lives. That, though he is lost to him now, Christ came that lost things may be found again. Every lost thing.

My mind is heavy with thoughts of these families facing the holidays without their precious children--perhaps because I have a son who is five years old and in kindergarten and my mind keeps putting him in the place of these kids. Perhaps because I have seen friends go through the pain of losing a child and those feelings are still fresh.

I have a favorite conference talk that I share with people often. I carry a copy of it around with me, and I've had the opportunity to hand it out several times to people who are struggling with the the loss of a loved one and share with them the most hopeful words I've ever heard. Here's the link if you want to read it in full, but I am going to include my favorite passage from it. Not only is it appropriate for what has happened in Newtown and for anyone who is struggling right now through unimaginable trials, but also for Christmas, when we remember the Light of the World and the great gift He gave us.

And if you're thinking: Kaylee, this post is too serious and too long and I'm going to skip this quote... I get that. I know I've had a series of kind of heavy posts, and it won't always be this way over here, but sometimes life gets serious. And sometimes we need a reminder of hope.

I've underlined the very best part of this quote, the life changing, hopeful part that I have memorized and think of whenever I get overwhelmed with this life, so if you are going to skip everything else, at least read that.

"I think of how dark that Friday was when Christ was lifted up on the cross.
On that terrible Friday the earth shook and grew dark. Frightful storms lashed at the earth.
Those evil men who sought His life rejoiced. Now that Jesus was no more, surely those who followed Him would disperse. On that day they stood triumphant.
On that day the veil of the temple was rent in twain.
Mary Magdalene and Mary, the mother of Jesus, were both overcome with grief and despair. The superb man they had loved and honored hung lifeless upon the cross.
On that Friday the Apostles were devastated. Jesus, their Savior—the man who had walked on water and raised the dead—was Himself at the mercy of wicked men. They watched helplessly as He was overcome by His enemies.
On that Friday the Savior of mankind was humiliated and bruised, abused and reviled.
It was a Friday filled with devastating, consuming sorrow that gnawed at the souls of those who loved and honored the Son of God.
I think that of all the days since the beginning of this world’s history, that Friday was the darkest.
But the doom of that day did not endure.
The despair did not linger because on Sunday, the resurrected Lord burst the bonds of death. He ascended from the grave and appeared gloriously triumphant as the Savior of all mankind.
And in an instant the eyes that had been filled with ever-flowing tears dried. The lips that had whispered prayers of distress and grief now filled the air with wondrous praise, for Jesus the Christ, the Son of the living God, stood before them as the firstfruits of the Resurrection, the proof that death is merely the beginning of a new and wondrous existence.
Each of us will have our own Fridays—those days when the universe itself seems shattered and the shards of our world lie littered about us in pieces. We all will experience those broken times when it seems we can never be put together again. We will all have our Fridays.
But I testify to you in the name of the One who conquered death—Sunday will come. In the darkness of our sorrow, Sunday will come.
No matter our desperation, no matter our grief, Sunday will come. In this life or the next, Sunday will come." --Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin


  1. Thank you so much for sharing this. I was baptized when I was 14, two weeks to the day before my mother died of complications from a brain tumor surgery. I don't know what I'd have done without the knowledge I'd gained from the missionaries. I've always said the Lord got to me just in time. It was hard enough even with my new testimony.

  2. Thank you for posting this. It is a great reminder to everyone who is sad and in despair. And as we celebrate his birth in a few days we can remember his comfort and love.

    Oh and thank you for the Luke idea on my blog. I'm going to start doing that. I think my kids would really enjoy if we read a chapter a night. ;0)

  3. Beautiful! this fills my heart with so much gladness, I don't think I could have said it better myself. Thank you for reminding us of this powerful gift. <3

  4. Beautiful thoughts, and exactly what I feel whenever I see people grieving. This isn't the end! I wish so much people could see that.

  5. Heartfelt and lovely, Kaylee. The quote is wonderful and so hopeful. I'm grateful I know what I do so I can focus on having a forever family.

  6. Definitely not too serious or too long. It breaks my heart and brings tears to my eyes as well, but the quote brings a great light to it all. Glad you shared.


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