“Joy Comes in the Morning”

Dear Fremont Family:

I wanted to thank you for your prayers and the kind words you have shared with me since receiving the difficult news of my mother’s cancer. This past week, in particular, has been heavy as we learned that the chemotherapy was not working and her cancer is aggressively spreading. Yesterday, my mother started a new regimen of immunotherapy, and we are hoping that the treatment will give her as much quality of life for as long as possible. In the meantime, I have slowly started my grieving process.

As a pastor, it has been my privilege to accompany many people as they prepare for the end of life. It is a sacred experience to listen, accompany and lift to God each person in the beauty of their particular lives. Yet, I find that as a daughter to one who is dying, I am a little disoriented. This time, it hits me close to home.

One of my mother’s favorite places when she was a child was Wilshire Park (pictured above). Her childhood home was nearby on NE 34th and Going. She has told me stories of her days playing in the sandbox there (although I think it’s no longer the same one!) and resting under the tall trees. Now, I find myself more and more drawn there as a way to be close to her in between my visits to Eugene. This morning, as I walked in the early morning sunlight, the words of the psalmist came to my mind: “Weeping may last for the night, but joy comes in the morning.” Psalm 30:5.

The psalmist is singing about how suffering comes and goes over the course of our lives, but for me, I was thinking instead about how I don’t want to miss the joy even in the midst of the suffering right now. Time is precious. Life is precious, and our relationships are precious even as they are temporal. So, while I weep, I am also going to look for the joy.

You are all a big part of that joy for me. Thank you for your care and for sharing this beautiful life with me.

Grace and peace,