Yesterday was a hard day, and that is the bottom line.
Last week a 13 year old boy named Quinn Driscoll died on the track at his school of an unknown heart condition. On Friday, I got a call asking me to do the music for the memorial. Honored and humbled, I took on the difficult task of putting together a band and music that would minister to 1100 hurting people, and one very broken family.
Loosing a child is a parents’ worst nightmare and nobody likes to think about it. The reality is that we can not predict nor control things in this world. We trust God and pray that He has a plan for our lives. Yesterday, however, left me with some very important things to think about.
First of all, this is a close family. All the kids in the Driscoll family have been heavily involved in sports. The dad is a coach and the mom attends all events. The siblings all support each other and they travel together as a family to each sporting event to support one another. Their common interests bonded this family and Mom and Dad stayed incredibly involved with their 3 children. As they walked into the room yesterday, there were 4 chairs set up for the Driscolls. The mom (Kelly), asked with tears, “Where is the 5th chair? I need a 5th chair set up for the family!” Quickly a 5th chair was set up and Kelly carefully placed Quinn’s baseball jersey, #42, across the chair and put his baseball on the chair. It was a scene I can not let go of. It was a good reminder to me to find ways to keep our family bonded through common interests. My family doesn’t have many athletes but we all like music, drama and art. We all can support each other in these areas.
Second, Scott, the dad, told the pastor to make it very clear to the attendees that he wanted each person in that room to go home and hug their kids and family. He believed in good relationships with his family and never left anything undone or on a bad note. He said it was “all good with Quinn” and was blessed with no regret. The pastor encouraged the crowd to make it all good with their families making sure to clear conflicts up and practice forgiveness. No regrets. He also encouraged the room to make it all good with God and gave a beautiful invitation to Christ. I was reminded to not let my kids or my husband leave my home with my anger pouring on them. We have those bad mornings where kids are running late, I am stressed and emotions are flaring. It’s important to say goodbye with a hug everyday.
I looked around the room I saw at least 300 middle school students, several with team jerseys on, several sharing testimonies about Quinn and what a best friend he was, all giving thanks to mom and dad Driscoll for welcoming them into their home. I saw Scott, the dad giving bear hugs to kids that were his son’s best friends and standing by them as they spoke ( he jumped from his front row seat as soon as these kids shared). The family was gracious and quick to minister to friends and family. I was reminded to continue to open my home to other kids, no matter how messy and how loud they are. I was reminded to love my friends’ kids and show them the love of Jesus.
I saw Quinn’s sisters broken for a lost brother, a pain that will last a long time. Again, they were all close and it was obvious from stories, pictures and the way their family supported each other. I was reminded to continue the effort to help my kids get along. My mother in law is a counselor and she told me once that often people wait too long before they get help in their relationships. It’s important to keep relationships strong. This takes humility, forgiveness and letting go of pride. It’s important to help my kids learn this.
Last, I was reminded that this world is temporary and everything in it. I am glad that there will be a day with no more tears in a place called Heaven.
Specializing in Marriage and Family Therapy
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Wow. I’m speechless. I sent this blog entry to my family yesterday because I felt like it was such a powerful, deep yet transparent message. Thank you for writing this, I needed it.