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Psalm 39:4Amplified Bible 

Lord, make me to know my end and [to appreciate] the measure of my days—what it is; let me know and realize how frail I am [how transient is my stay here].

1 Corinthians 15:55 (KJV) O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?

Here on the mountaintop we've been walking through the valley. That dreaded valley of death. It never gets easier, does it?! It's been bitter and sweet. Tears flow freely at the weirdest moments. Memories flit through my brain and put a smile on my face and a pain in my gut at the same time. It's made me, again, really think about what I believe, how I am living, and if I am making a difference with this one life God graciously blessed me with.
I once thought to make a difference I had to be doing incredible, God-sized things that impacted hundreds, thousands even. I thought being a mommy, loving my family well and sharing my life with others was not enough. There had to be more!
 "When Lord will you let me do big things for you?" was the cry of my heart. You know what I mean, right? Like being an evangelist, or a missionary, or starting a ministry, or gathering orphans from all over the world, or, or, or......I guess I'm one of His slower sheep because I'd hear His voice whispering to me over and over "you are doing big things for Me", yet I didn't believe it and I'd always struggle and strain against "my calling" because it just didn't feel....enough. After all, look what God did for me. I could at least be doing world-changing stuff for him!  
And then sickness consumed my precious Aunts body and Jesus beckoned her home. It happened so quickly. Too quickly! She fought hard but the pain was constant and the hope of healing faded fast.  I am so ever thankful that Sean saw the necessity in me going to the hospital only days before she passed to spend time with her. I was able to hug her, pray with her and talk with her one last time. It was such a gift! 
But my heart hurts. When I think of life without her boisterous laugh and her encouraging notes the pain is deep. Her life was well lived. She made her days count. She gave out of her abundance and her lack. She always, always, always had an easy smile and a hug. She loved my babies (all of them!) with abandon. She would call or email me just to see how my little ones were liking the snow or the holidays, etc. She was a gift!
Her death has taken me to a new place in my life. A place where I finally understand what "making a difference" truly looks like.  It is simple really. I was making it way tougher than it is. I was trying to make it about doing something BIG for Jesus but truth is, it's not about that. It's about living our lives for Jesus. That's it! 
Wow, right?! 
You see, my Aunt Dawn was not a missionary in a foreign country but she was a missionary in her city. In fact, one of her neighbors was visibly touched by her gift of friendship and her caring towards him. He spoke not once but 4 times at her service!
Aunt Dawn did not have great wealth or riches by the worlds standards but if you would have seen the room overflowing with friends and family that loved her, you would have known how rich she truly was! 
There were many tears as we celebrated her life through the many stories we all had of her. Many, many stories of shared laughter, tears and doing life together. Ahhh, she will be missed because she made a difference in this world by living her life with her eyes focused on Jesus! 
So I am going to honor her legacy by just continuing to do what I've been doing.....loving my family well, serving others and keeping my eyes on Jesus. I'm not going to fall into the trap of thinking what I'm doing doesn't matter or isn't enough anymore. Because I've witnessed the fruit of a simple, ordinary, woman just living life with her eyes on Her Savior. And someday, when I pass into the Promise Land, I pray that there will be a multitude gathered sharing how my life made a difference in theirs. Not to praise my name but to praise the One who lived in me! 


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