Saturday, February 9, 2013

It isn't all about me

Shocking, I know. You thought it was all about me, didn't you? :)

We went to a memorial service today. Sweet baby Josiah Owen was laid to rest beside his big brother. It was beautiful; sad and heartbreaking and confusion-inducing but it was beautiful. Jesus was there; comforting and spreading his peace upon each head. The Marx family was heart broken over the loss of another son but the Lord was covering them with joy and peace just as we all have asked Him to do. It was beautiful.

1 Samuel 1:27-28  I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him. So now I give him to the Lord. For his whole life he will be given over to the Lord.

I had the privilege, again, of meeting some wonderful women and I am so overjoyed that Jesus has linked us all in this way. There is nothing like the love I have for families of loss. There is just a silent understanding. If there is one thing this life and this journey have taught Wesley and I it is this: it is not all about us.

The second that Elle passed away a surge of compassion rushed into our hearts. An ache so deep that even a year and a half later it is still there. I have no idea if our Jesus will do something more with it some day but for now it just sits and calls to us when other families are hurting. It is not all about us; it is about them. It is about Cat and Derek and their family. It is about the ache they are feeling tonight. It is about the love and the joy we can share with them. It is about showing compassion in their desperate time of need.

Isaiah 43:2 When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.

Today was not easy for Wesley and I. We walked into another service just like the service for our daughter. We looked at the tiny box that held that sweet baby boy. We watched his mama and his daddy cry tears of sadness over the dreams that would be buried. We watched as they watched his box be carried out of that room, never to be seen again. This day brought back all of the emotions of that day. But, today was not about us. It was about them. It was about crying tears for them and being there to show them that it's not all about us. It was about showing the love of our Savior. It was about reminding them of the faithfulness of our God. It was about them.

Tonight I just feel so blessed to have grown up in a home where it wasn't all about me. My parents were gracious enough to teach us all how to have compassion for others. They made sure that self-pity did not last long and they taught us that it could be turned into compassion for others. I am grateful for such a wonderful mama and daddy. I don't talk about them very much here but just know they are awesome and deserve way more praise than I give them.

Isaiah 49:16 See, I have written your name on the palms of my hands.
Always in my mind is a picture of Jerusalem’s walls in ruins.

I am hesitant to post this here but I received a rather un-compassionate comment here about a week ago. Anonymous decided that they needed to let me know their feelings, which this is a public blog and they are free to comment how they please. I was not fond of this comment and it just made me more aware of my compassion towards others. I thanked the Lord for the reminder and silently yelled at anonymous in my mind. :) Be careful because one day you may be the one needing just a little bit of compassion. I hope that you are showing some mercy and compassion to those in your corner of this world that need it.

Jesus, thank you for the gift of compassion. Thank you for giving me just enough today to love a family that needed it. I pray that you will continue to move me to compassion for others who are aching. I pray for the Marx family near Jesus, be oh so near. Thank you for giving Catherine peace and joy. Thank you that this experience was so completely different from Owen's. Thank you that you are the giver of comfort and strength and all things great. I love you and continue to pour your mercy out on Catherine, Derek, Brayden and Addison...

Job 1:21 The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.


Isaiah 61:3 To all who mourn in Israel, He will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair. In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks that the Lord has planted for his own glory.

Elle and Isaiah's Mommy

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Lightening Does Strike Twice

I have a friend...a very special friend.

Her name is Catherine.

She has 4 precious babies.

Brayden is 6.

Addison is 4.

Owen is in heaven.

And now so is Josiah.

God puts people in our path and I will believe that until the day that I die. Our Elle passed away August 13th, 2011. We spent almost every day at the cemetery for the rest of that month, just waiting to see if anything would ever change with the spot that we picked out for our little girl. Almost every day something changed. The dirt was different or grass seeds were planted or the cement was poured. One day my sister in law texted me. Oh, no. It had happened again. Another baby. We were so hoping and praying that Elle's spot would be the LAST spot in that cemetery for a baby but alas, life moves on and sucks not only for us but for so many others.

We had no idea who that baby was and we tried and tried to find out. We looked in the paper and we called the funeral home that we used, to see if they knew the family. We were told that they couldn't give out that information. We figured if God wanted us to meet we would. We took flowers to that sweet baby and we prayed for his or her family every time we went to visit Elle's spot.

October came and our original due date arrived. That day Wesley and I left a letter for Elle and the envelope read Ellersley Grace Deem on the outside. We stood and blew kisses to our little lady never knowing that letter would lead us Catherine.

A few days after that we received this comment on one of our blog posts...

You don't know me, but our babies are side by side over at Union. I was there today visiting our son, Owen and I saw the letter to Ellersley with her name on it. I had a feeling we had lost our babies very close together so I was hoping to find something out about her and was blessed to have found your blog. Our son, Owen, was born into glory on August 30. My heart aches every day for him as I know yours does for your sweet girl. I just wanted to say hi, to say how sorry I am for your loss and to let you know that I will be praying for you... maybe sometime we will run into each other visiting our babies.
I started a blog as well if you would like to read about Owen...
In Him,

We were blown away by the mystery of God. We were elated that she contacted us and we prayed fervently for her and her family. We prayed that God would allow us to meet soon and we thanked him for people in this world who completely understand the process of grieving a baby. Every time we went to the cemetery after that day we said hello to baby Owen. We grieved for his family and we prayed that God would hold them as they danced this dance of grief and joy just a few steps behind us.

Months went by and we did not cross paths. Every time we went to the cemetery we always thought maybe they would come and we would finally see this family we had been praying for but it never happened. Eventually, we found each other on facebook and became "friends". Then Catherine announced that she was pregnant. I was elated! I praised God and the fervent praying began again. I pleaded with him to allow this baby to come into this world safely and healthy. I cried and cried and prayed and prayed.

Then, came Trisomy 18.

Their baby was another boy.

His name would be Josiah Owen.

He was due on February 11th.

He was diagnosed with Trisomy 18.

The doctors said he would not live outside of the womb long, if he lived at all. How could this be? How is it possible that devastating, life-shattering, dream-ruining news can happen to one family two a row? I had no idea what to do or what to say. I spent the next 4 months praying and pleading and crying and writing and messaging. I told Catherine that Wesley and I were pleading and screaming at God on their behalf. I told Him how ridiculous I thought this was and there is no way possible that He would allow this to happen to this poor family again. I told Him how it was nearly impossible to live through one death of a child let alone two. How could He? How? 

One week and 2 days ago I met Catherine Marx at the baby shower for our son. She was 38 weeks pregnant with her handsome little Josiah Owen. She walked in and I must tell you the room stopped for a moment. There are just people in life that you were meant to know and Catherine is one of them. She was glowing and smiling from ear to ear and you could see the love for that baby boy all over her face. We had not even met, yet it felt like we had known each other our entire lives. Grief brings people together. We hugged and she sat right beside me until it was present opening time. We talked and laughed and I was so grateful that she came.

At the end of our shower I had the privilege and honor of praying over her and her Josiah. I prayed that God would fill Catherine and her family with joy over Josiah no matter what the plan was. I prayed that he would cover them with peace and comfort and strength for whatever the journey would hold. I prayed for the miraculous.

Josiah Owen came into this world at 5:01pm on Sunday, February 3rd, 2013. And let me tell you the miraculous happened. The doctors said that Josiah took one breath and then made his way to heaven but after a few minutes they came back and Josiah was still breathing. Catherine and her family begged and pleaded with God to have some time with it only a few minutes or a few hours they wanted time with him. That is exactly what God gave them.

Josiah flew to Jesus at 5:59pm; 58 minutes after he entered this world. His mama and his daddy and his big brother and his big sister got to spend 58 minutes with him; taking pictures and telling him just how much they loved him for the 39 weeks he was here. I have no words concerning the mysteries of my God.

I have no idea why lightening struck twice, but it surely did. At this point, I need you to pray. Pray for this family, pray for this home, pray for these babies, pray for this mama and daddy. Pray that God would COVER them in peace and joy, pray that the journey of grief would be full of God's mercy. Pray that they would feel the love and joy of God through friends and family. Pray that Josiah's sweet spirit would always be felt and pray that God's plan for Josiah's life would be made EVIDENT to his mama and daddy.

Jesus, you know how ridiculous I think this is. I love you, but it's just ridiculous. Ridiculous that a family has to endure such pain again because this world is just disgustingly evil. Ridiculous that they must try to balance grief again. Ridiculous that they have to search for peace again. Ridiculous. Your plan is the best plan, I know it and I believe it. I pray that you will remind Cat and Derek of your faithfulness; you will remind them of all you did in the midst of Owen's death and that Josiah's death will be no different. Remind them Lord, remind them. Remind me. Cover this family Jesus...cover them...

Elle's Mommy

Please visit Catherine's blog here:

In The Flood

Also, their close friends have set up a website for friends and family to give to this family if you feel led. Please consider is below. Thank you

Josiah Owen Marx