Monday, February 16, 2009

Sad Evening

Steve and I sang at a memorial service tonight.  When someone passes away, especially someone young, it just gives you pause to stop and take a deep breath.

To look at the people you have in your life and to really, truly appreciate them.

To speak things out when they come to mind; those tender words of encouragement and affection that sometimes stay hidden inside our hearts.

To speak life to other people.  To speak to their value, their potential.  To make moments together count.

Because you just never know.  

Jimmy was this amazing, selfless, 24 year old teddy bear of a guy that served in our children's ministry at church.  Seriously, the guy was there every Sunday morning and every Wednesday night.  How many 24 year old guys do you know that take time to wipe the noses of 2 year olds, feed them endless amounts of goldfish and cheerios, and get down on the floor and play with them for hours?

(Caleb is the one with the big paci in his mouth!)

One time Steve got a new desk for his office at the church and it literally came in 100 pieces. (Remember, my husband is an artist....)  So, we were looking for someone to put together his desk and Jimmy volunteered.  It took him almost an entire day, and when Steve offered to pay him, he said, "Just take me to Sonic and buy me a Root Beer".

His health was not great, but no one ever heard him complain about it.  Ever. He had been on dialysis since he was 18 after having a kidney transplant when he was 14. His girlfriend took him to the ER last Thursday because his chest was hurting, and he died a few hours later of an infection in the valve of his heart.  

He had a really hard life.  Not a great family life.  But he just rose above it, and he was just serving his heart out until the very end of his short life.  Our pastor talked tonight about there only being two kinds of people that God calls "great" - those who serve, and those who love. And Jimmy was stellar at both.

Caleb had this whole season where he would cry as soon as we pulled in the parking lot at church.  Classic separation anxiety.  The only person who could get him to stop crying?  Jimmy. He wouldn't want anyone else to hold him or take him from me except for Jimmy.  He would always go to Jimmy. Seth had to find him and give him a high five every Sunday, and when he was having a hard time going to his class....Jimmy would let him come hang out in the toddler room with Caleb.

My boys loved Mr. Jimmy.  And we will miss him.  

(Steve took this photo and last summer at VBS, and it was in the slide show tonight. I heard from someone that Jimmy was really proud of this picture because he got all the two and three year olds to sit in the hoola hoops and 
look at the camera. He just had a way with kids!)


Amy said...

Courts...this is tragic and sad. I am so sorry! Sweet Jimmy sounds like an amazing guy...

Karah said...

I'm so sorry for your loss! He sounds so amazing. *hugs*

juliadhull said...

Oh my...I totally remember seeing him every Sunday morning in childcare. I had no idea how young he was, I had no idea that he wasn't healthy, I had no idea what a servant he was! I feel like I missed out by not knowing such a great person...