Dear family and friends…
Today marks one month since we released Judson into the arms of Jesus. Our wound is very raw. In many ways the grief has been hitting us harder recently as the realities of Jud’s death are more apparent in the normalcy’s of life. We ache, but we trust. We trust a God who loves us deeply, and sacrificed so much so that we, along with Jud, can spend eternity rejoicing in His love.
We anticipate that Christmas will be very hard. The loss of a loved one during the holidays is hard enough in and of itself, but seeing as Jud’s birthday is Christmas Eve, it carries even more significance. We are taking one day at a time and discussing ways that we can honor his memory during this season.
We continue to receive so much love and support. We are humbled and in awe of the many ways people are surrounding us in our grief. Thank you! And please forgive me…I still have not been able to engage things in such a way so as to individually express the tremendous gratitude we feel in our hearts. Every word written, every gift, every flower, every bite of food, means SO much to us!
We also want to say thank you again to ALL who donated to the Judson Levasheff fund. The generosity of so many is staggering!!!! We were able to cover EVERY cost for Jud’s care while he was still present with us, along with EVERY single mortuary, funeral, and burial cost. We have not had a single out of pocket expense related to his care and death. INCREDIBLE! Amazingly, there is still money in the fund that will be used toward Jud’s website, grief counseling, and other things that will honor his memory and help Drake and I heal through this process. I want to specifically thank Drake’s sister Danielle who orchestrated establishing the fund and sent all the thank you cards on our behalf, and we are so grateful to our church (particularly Gina, Ruth, & Mark) for handling the many logistics involved.
I am continually touched by my personal emails. I thought maybe these words from my friend could encourage others as well:
“I felt compelled to spend some time in John 11 this morning, and the Lord showed me some new things that perhaps are old to you; nevertheless, I want to share them with you in hopes that He encourages you anew…I wondered why Jesus would heal Lazarus and not Jud. Jesus healed Lazarus because he wanted the people to believe that God had sent Him (vs. 42)…But He has performed a different type of miracle in Judson’s physical death: He has challenged those of us who already believe that Jesus was sent by God, to further belief. He knows our hearts, that is, those of the community standing by your side…We are a group that needs life’s trials to strengthen the foundation God has already laid. But what about the onlookers, those who do not believe Jesus was sent by God? WE must be the miracle. WE are the resurrected beings, miracles in and of ourselves, as we demonstrate faith that God is good and His ways are ALWAYS good. I will stand by you as a miracle, one given faith that seems preposterous. Jesus wept and groaned [for Lazarus], and I will do so with you. His purpose was to show His love and truth, and He will do so through Jud’s death just as powerfully as He did through Lazarus’ resurrection.”-J.M.
How profound is the love of so many that reminds us we are not walking this journey alone!
Much love and gratitude,
Christina (on behalf of Drake too)