Dear Aimee -
I went to your grave today. You weren't there. I didn't expect you to be; you left your earthsuit almost a year ago.
I stood quietly for a moment. It was cold, but not nearly so cold as the day we buried you. February's chill hasn't yet come. Then I read a part of First Corinthians 15 - one of the best parts, the part about earthly bodies and heavenly ones. The part that says we bear the image of the Second Man in our heavenly bodies. I wonder what you look like now.
I didn't have anything to leave at your grave - it was sort of a whim to come by today. There were flowers there, though. Someone else came this week. I just read Scripture and then whispered to God.
I asked Him to hold your family tightly. To comfort them particularly in the next few months. I saw them a week ago, and we missed you. You were with us in our shared memory, but we missed the particular lilt to your voice, which didn't enter the conversation, the particular turn to your smile which didn't take part in the merriment, the particular tune of your laugh which didn't ring at the jokes.
We talked of you some, we thought of you more, and when we parted, we prayed for one another. And I thanked God He's protected them all this year. I thanked Him for holding your dad, for comforting your mom, for strengthening and encouraging your brothers, for caring for your sister. Some people might not think, knowing everything your family's been through this year, that thanking God for what He's done in their lives is the right attitude. But those people haven't met your family - and they haven't met their God.
I went to your grave today, Aimee, and as always, you pointed me to God.