November 12, 2007
Evangelical Free Church
“How do you measure a life? In years? In accomplishments? In diplomas? In material wealth? Deep down most of us know that those things are not good measures of a life. And yet as I struggled to make sense of what was happening to Judson, I struggled most with the fact that he was so young. Too young, I felt, for this to befall him. “For goodness sake, he’s not even three?” But over time I saw things with different lenses: I saw God at work in the lives of so many; I saw worship, praise, and confession. I saw the Spirit softening hearts and changing minds. I sensed the Spirit softening my heart and changing my mind. And I eventually realized that our lives should only appropriately be measured by God’s hand on them. Is he glorified in and through our lives? With that as our measure, then I say Jud lived a full and fruitful life.
~ Mark Page, family friend and pastor
I was so blessed to get to see Jud nearly every day, and his mommy and daddy will tell you that I was Judson’s “first best friend.” He was pretty little when we realized that he was very smart and so obedient—always such a joy. I am so thankful for all of the wonderful memories I have with him. Hearing his first words, seeing his first steps, celebrating his birthday, and knowing what a loving, sweet-natured little guy he was… Jud might not have lived long enough to learn reading, writing and arithmetic, but one thing is for certain: he knew Jesus, and he knew that Jesus loved him.
~ June Catron, family friend and neighbor
Jud with his smile, and his beauty, reached out and stole my heart, and now I am forever changed…My best model of God’s strength was in this precious boy who was losing his abilities, and his body was so weak. What many of you may not know is all the things Jud still could do in his last months and weeks. Jud and I swam in the ocean with Dori, looking for Nemo. We went to the zoo and roared with the lions. We ran from dogs in the park and raced up the stairs to the longest slide in the world, and then I watched as he went down, while I blew gently on his forehead so he felt the wind. Although we could sit in a room full of toys, nothing sustained Jud more than his memories and imagination…Jud appreciated the simple pleasures. He appreciated laughter, a good joke, and a smile. God has entered my life before and has changed me, and through this little boy I am forever changed as well.
~ Sarah Hegenbart Bobar, family friend and Jud’s caregiver
Drake and Christina, and in a lesser way those who believed with them, have taken a terrible risk. They have risked believing that God would do something that he clearly has not. They risked asking God for something he did not give. And they risked asking for it publicly…And now their grief is public too. But what has also been made public is a proper view of who God is. They have risked behaving in such a way that if Jesus were alive and walking around today they would do everything in their power to get their son in front of him and beg him to heal Jud. And why should they, or we, not behave in such a way? They behaved as if God is good, God is powerful, God is a healer, God is a Father who loves them and listens to the prayers of his children. They risked behaving with a proper view of who God is. They believed that God is not a God who asks us to come to him with watered-down hopes. Of all people we ought to hope…
~ Craig and Kelly Hill, family friends
Judson had so many qualities. Amongst the many, he was a teacher; he had a teacher’s heart. As he soaked in the world around him, he also wanted to help others learn. He frequently pointed out to Jessie various objects around our home. He would ask, “Can you say, Chevy Blazer?” while placing his Matchbox Chevy Blazer in Jessie’s hand. A favorite teaching moment was when he was eating a banana and said, “Jessie, can you say banana—BA-NAN-NA. BA-NAN-NA. Jessie, can you say that?” Judson’s teaching will not stop. I will spend the rest of my life reflecting on his couple years, knowing there is so much to learn from him. Not only am I honored and extremely proud to have been Jud’s mom, but I am also blessed to be his student.
~ Christina Levasheff, Jud’s Mom
As Krabbe disease progressed, our faith grew, and we began to hope and expect that Judson would be healed. Many of you stood with us in the same type of faith—with extraordinary prayer, offered at all hours, and with fasting…Why we haven’t received the answer we expected? I don’t know. We may never know why God has not answered our faith-filled prayers for Judson’s healing here on earth. But I do know this: I still believe the God I serve hears the prayers of His people. There’s one prayer that we have always prayed for Jud that God has answered in extraordinary ways. We’ve prayed, for as long as we have had Jud, that God would make him a blessing. If today’s celebration of his life is any indication, then God has made our Judson a blessing not only to us but to many people.
~ Drake Levasheff, Jud’s Dad