I am lifting up this prayer of thanks to you. On this day when my heart is a bit heavy, a bit sad, a bit empty over the loss of my dear sweet friend, Susanne, I am thanking you for the gift of her in my life.
Thank you for making her the kind of person that made me and so many feel truly special, strong, and able to do anything.
Thank you that I can call her best friend, just like so many can.
Thank you that all who knew her can live out her memory by being a little bit like her.
We can give a bit of ourselves for someone else.
We can watch a Disney movie and remember to “Just keep swimming,” “Hukuna matata!” “Even miracles take a little time,” or “All it takes is faith and trust.”
We can always have a listening ear.
We can speak truth even when it’s hard.
We can persevere.
Thank you, God
For welcoming her into heaven’s arms
For the fabulous celebration in heaven when she entered in
Thank you for giving her a healed new body
One that runs and dances and sings
One that has deep conversations and laughter with all of heaven’s heroes
One that feels no more pain or fear
One that smiles wide and enjoys a Mickey ice cream bar
That rides on heaven’s roller coasters
And travels to all your beautiful sights
Feels the sun’s warmth, cool ocean breezes, sand between toes, fresh snow on fingertips.
Thank you, Lord, for the example she was of your love
For her fighting spirit
Her generous, giving heart
Her commitment and dedication as a friend, daughter, sibling, teacher.
Thank you for the gift of her life, Lord.
As I wrap up this prayer, I also ask for your strength, for me and all who love Susanne.
There will be moments when we will want to pick up our phones to share something with her, to tell her some great news, or share sad news. We probably want to do that now, to say, “Hey, I’m really bummed out that you’re not here.” We will want to give her a hug, have lunch with her, go on a run with her, go on a Disney adventure with her, even sit at the beach on a rainy day with her or chaperone a middle school event with her, the list goes on and on. But even though we can’t do those things, we can lift our hearts to you. We can thank you for the time we did have with her and for the time we will have with her again one day.
We can hear her voice and live in a way that honors her memory. We can do all the things she encouraged us to do, knowing she would remind us of the words she wrote to me once on a notecard, “Always remember you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” – Christopher Robin to Pooh.
Thank you, God, for your love, shared through beautiful souls like Susanne's, and held in our hearts forever.
In Jesus name,