Joey was just a high school kid when we first met him. The Johnsons moved in to the house next to our little cottage in Mikoi Place. I still can remember his smile when I first met him. He was such a sweet teenager, I just love his countenance. Even with the big age gap, Joey and my husband Bradley became buddies. We have a lot of fun memories of him.
Joey was here on Maui last week, for Mothers Day and for his sister's graduation. I saw him at church and gave him a hug. I am glad I did. Who would have known that that would be our last hug?
A couple months ago we were e-mailing each other about some work related stuff. In the midst of the e-mail correspondence I told him that I am assuming he is doing well but to let me know if there is something I can pray for him. He e-mailed back saying that yes he's doing well but he can always use some prayers. He asked that I pray for God's direction in his life. He said he doesn't know yet.
As I sit here thinking about Joey, I am pondering that maybe, just maybe, the reason why God hasn't revealed His plan to Joey's life at that time is because God knows his time on earth will be short...
But Joey ... Joey lived his life to its fullest. He loves to worship God through songs (like his dad). He traveled to see the world. He has a lot of friends. He is loved by many.... He is just 20 something years old but he's mature beyond his age, and has accomplished more than many of us older than he is ...
Joey was my encourager on blogging when I was just starting to blog. I remember during one of his Maui visits, he and my husband were talking about his blog and my husband told him that I am blogging too. He said "I know. Your wife's blog is good". At that time, my husband was unsure about my blogging. But Joey's words gave him an assurance that I am doing something good.
Joey is like a little brother to me. His parents are practically "the savior of our marriage". Karen is our marriage counselor. Joe is Bradley's Promise Keeper bro. Their guidance and love made my husband and I stuck with each other during rough times in our marriage (my husband and I are doing well now) . I wish I can do something to ease the pain they are feeling because of Joey's death. Death. These five letter word is so hard to type... but as the verse on the header reminded us, Joey is now with Jesus, for he believed in Jesus; and Jesus said "whoever believes in him shall not die but have an everlasting life..."
As we think of ways to express support to the Johnson's family, I request that we also think of the warm memories we have of Joey. Do you have stories on how Joey touched your life? How he was an encouragement to you? If so, would you consider sharing that with us on the comment section of this post?
I thought it would be encouraging that while we express our sorrow and grief on Joey's death, we can also celebrate his life as we share our memories of him while he was here with us.
Let's keep the comments coming while we wait for the details on when and where the Memorial is going to be...
Monday, May 26, 2008
Posted by Hope Chapel Admin at 1:50 AM