I wasn't sure how the day would feel but I just embraced it as best as possible. I started the morning early driving to Dallas while listening to one of Josh's sermons from 2012. In this message, he talked about the faith of Abraham - one of his favorite characters to talk about it. He spends time talking about how the breaks in the sometimes boring Biblical genealogy listings draw our attention to moments in history that God wants us to pay attention to. The sections typically state, so-and-so lived this long, had this many children and died at a certain age, etc . . . etc. . . Hearing Josh talk about this had me thinking how if our story was listed in this format today how our story might stand out as a little different too. Maybe it would be that Josh's life was shorter than expected, that we don't have kids or something else all together that declares God in a more grand way.
No matter, I do know that on this particular day, there is a pause; there is a break in the story of Josh's life here on earth and we as family and friends feel it.
As much as I tried to think about being sad today, I couldn't help but continue to feel overwhelming gratitude for Josh's life. There were moments when my heart sank a little still as I drove down the street we lived on for years in Dallas and walked by his favorite store full of great looking cardigans. But generally, today ended up being a bit of a busy day with getting my hair fixed and then spending several hours with my great shopping buddy at my favorite mall (North Park) in Dallas. I even found the most perfect Kate Spade shirt that has as a "rarh" on it, and a few other great treasures to collect as birthday treats in honor of Josh - I'm sure he wouldn't mind - haha. Of course, I didn't need any of it but still . . .
The night wrapped up with dinner with some treasured friends we meet as DTS students, the Lopez'. We celebrated Josh as we pray for our food, laughed, ate and shared about life. Josh would have enjoyed the company and for me it was so life-giving to be in such wonderful company while eating delicious steak, plantains and churros at a Latin restaurant. In some ways, I would have loved to have gathered all our friends together again for a birthday meal but at the same time, a simple day was perfect for this first birthday minus Josh.
My mind still is racing as I process each new day. I often feel like I am still trying to solve a puzzle that lacks a real solution. But if there is anything to remember on this day, it is that God is faithful. This is a story that continues in many genealogies, in the Old Testament story of Abraham and in the modern day story of Josh and Jenn - even if it is hard to see clearly from this vantage point.
Hi! It's Jenn Brown, writing my story that is now slightly different as we enter a season of new grief. On September 30, 2019, my dear husband Josh passed away after battling brain cancer.