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Thursday, April 17, 2008

Memories of Scott

OK, I am on a roll-2 memorials in less than 5 days-do I really like doing this? No, but timing was not my idea, so, here goes with the blog entry I had been planning on for months to remember what would have been my brother's 43rd birthday today.

My brother Scott was born 16 months after I was, and we were always very close-inseparable would be more like it. Mom always said he did not need to learn to talk, I did it all for him-he was my baby brother, and I loved him to pieces. Until he got big enough to start annoying the heck out of me, which happened a lot, but I still loved him.

When he joined the Marines after high school graduation, I thought my heart would break-how was I going to enjoy Christmas without him? I cherished the letters I got while at college, and when he came home on leave, we spent a good deal of time together. He was stationed in Japan and brought me home a beautiful tea set-I will always cherish that as well-I couldn't believe he got that FOR ME!!

We drifted apart as we got older, I was somewhat wild and living on the extreme side of life for awhile-he was very conservative and old-fashioned-which is where I ended up back at in the end too. When he married, we weren't invited, he kept it very small-like about 15 people, but I was very happy for he and Cathy-they were a perfect fit-and I love her to death.

My brother had lots of crazy ideas in his life-but the one I will always treasure the most was his insatiable desire to overcome the odds of stage 4 multiple melanoma-not the skin cancer, the ugly, tumors all over your body cancer that is basically incurable.

He tried everything imaginable and legal, but in the end, cancer would be the victor-of his body, but not of his spirit. When the first tumor was spotted, and they were searching for a doctor, I started talking to him about eternity-you know, heaven, hell, and where did he want to end up? He would hang up quite disgusted with me, as his wife tells me now, because we had been raised in a Catholic church, and taught that baptism was the answer to eternity.

Well, I had gotten born-again about 7 years before this, and I was quite zealous in sharing my new faith, but not many family members were too interested-until the summer of 2004. Scott began asking questions, and not liking the answers, but still seeing something different in me he had never seen before, so he kept wondering.

I shared with him how God loved him, and did not want him to perish, but Scott insisted he was a good person, and God would not send a good person to Hell. I said, "He only honors your choice, He doesn't SEND you there."

He was really searching,pondering, and wondering about his life. He made ammends with all of us as he had pushed many of us away in the last couple years. He determined that it was his mission to bring our family back together-never mind it was he who kind of drove us apart-and he did a great job of mending fences and falling back in love with his family again.

About 12 days before his death, he had a dream-a recurring dream, he told me. He was driving his semi, and he would crest a huge hill, and the brakes would go out, and he would try really hard to get it stopped before the end, which was always getting closer with each dream. This day, he crested the hill, and there was no where else to go but off a cliff, and he woke up screaming, "Jesus,save my soul."

Well, he was transformed on the spot. I visited with him a few hours after that dream,which he called to tell me about, andhe was just radiant-"Are you happy now?" he asked me? Yes, happy you have found your peace with Jesus, happy you are free from everything that was holding you down, and happy I will see you again in Heaven some day.

It was my greatest privilege ever to be with him the day before he died. All of us were there, Chuck, Kendell, Nick, Mom, Dad, Kyle and Sara and the girls, Cathy-we were all there to see his new tractor and haybine arrive-how he worried about Cathy being able to continue farming on her own with all the old equipment they had-he just beamed when the trucker got to their place, and unloaded the equipment they were purchasing with his life insurance money-right in front of his window-he wanted to touch that tractor so bad-but it was not to be-he was losing ground moment by moment.

That had to be the greated truck driver ever-he came into the house and shook my brother's hand-what a cool moment that was-and Scott was so pleased to have provided that tractor for Cathy.

I was also blessed to be by his side the night he passed away. He just went so peacefully to be with Jesus-and we were also all there that night as well-his parents, wife and siblings-all loving him, holding him, praying over him, letting him know, it was OK to go home now!

It is amazing, 3 1/2 years later-how much I still miss that guy-he had such a crazy sense of humor, such a hearty laugh-he was a real Far Side type of guy.

But he was my brother, the one I had shared so much of my life with, and sometimes it still doesn't seem possible that he is gone, that I can't share the latest episodes of our farm life with him anymore, or listen to his endless "time-saving" or "money-making" ideas.

But Someday, we will be together again.

In Him



Rebecca said...

He sounds like an amazing person. What a blessing that he made his peace with God before he passed away!

When I read memorials like these, it always makes me ponder how fleeting life is - and how merciful our God to give us the hope of eternal life.


Katie said...

Oh boy Chris! You are starting Memorial Day a bit early. What lovely tributes! It's great to have lots of love in your life!!!

Shana said...

Oh, Chris, what a rough week this has been for you and your family! I am so sorry for your losses. As always, you seem to find the joy in things and I am sure that makes your brother and grandmother proud. Best wishes to you and your family.

Dawn said...

Goodness let me go grab a tissue before I slobber all over the laptop...lol.

What a blessing it is to know Scott is with our Lord right now!

Life is but a vapor the Bible says.
It truly is too short.

I think it's a blessing to honor your brother this way.
And thank you for sharing him with the rest of the blogging community.

Hugs and God Bless,

Sarah k said...

OH so sweet Chris! You have me in tears though hon! My sister died Sep 14, the same year the Towers fell. She would have been 43 also this June! SO, I know the pain you have. It is not easy, but it gets easier with time. I love that he came to know the Lord though. That is the most awesome gift God could have given you. We still wonder what shape Mary's soul was in. I cling to the fact she had outlined scriptures in her Bible when we found it! Thank you for sharing your brother with us.