Laura and I are thankful for your continued prayers and presence as we face the unbearable weight brought on by Luke's death. We miss him deeply. There is simply no replacing his presence in our lives. We take great comfort in the reality that Luke is home in heaven with God. Still, we miss him so very much.
We have found tremendous comfort in our memories of Luke, and in the memories of Luke others have shared with us. We also continue to be amazed by the legacy Luke is leaving. A few examples:
1) On Friday night, Luke was honored at the Mason High School Varsity basketball game. During halftime, members of the band circled the gym to collect money for the Luke Legacy Fund. They collected $1382, which will allow us to send 3 or 4 additional Mason kids to Young Life camp next summer. (More on the amazing progress of the Luke Legacy Fund coming in a future blog post!)
2) Fred Choi, one of my co-Pastors, snapped and framed a photo (see below) of all of the items that were displayed at Luke's memorial service, things that remind us of Luke's unique interests and skills.
3) I met a woman who has been following along with this blog since Luke's diagnosis. Her first visit to Riverview Church was for Luke's memorial service. She began attending our weekend services, and hasn't missed a week. She has been reading through the Bible along with our teaching series, and continues to find inspiration in Luke's faith even though she never met him.
4) We received an application from a college student to volunteer at one of the Young Life camps for the summer 2018. One of the questions was, "Please share a Bible verse that has meant a lot to you in the past year." Here was the answer: "The passage that meant a lot to me this past year is Romans 8:18, which says, "I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us." My good friend Luke Granger, whom I become really close with over Work Crew this past summer, lived and breathed by this verse. Luke had terminal cancer and the last thing he wanted to do at the end of his life was to go to Work Crew. During our time together, he reminded me every time I would complain about the dirty toilets or the super early mornings, that these small things have no comparison of the glory that will be revealed to us in our ETERNAL life. After he passed away early this fall, I really dug into Romans 8, and it has just been a huge reminder of when I'm falling down in my faith and when hardships come, that our sufferings are not worth worrying about, because we have been saved by Jesus our Lord."
Did I mention how deeply we miss Luke? Thank you always for your continued prayers and presence.
James & Lu
(for Sam, Jay, and Luke)