Five Years Ago Today…



This card came in the mail yesterday.
From Selah’s doctor up at the Children’s Hospital.
She remembers every year.

Just one word– Selah,
To pause and value.

And I went walking with some friends this morning and one said–

“It’s not that you miss the person less…
It’s that around you, life fills (with joy) all the more.”

My cousin is going home to an empty nursery, an empty crib…
Her empty arms aching for their little boy Oliver, who died last Friday.
She’s just beginning the unavoidable walk through grief,
Still wondering if she’ll ever feel anything other than raw pain.

I take a deep breath.

“I breathe the home air.  Jesus tells us that the air of his home is love:
‘You have loved me before the foundation of the world…’
Love surrounds all and conquers grief…” ~Spurgeon

There are joyful-giggle-screams echoing through my window,
where cousins are playing-arguing about who is the best ninja,
while their feet pump hard in the air, swings soaring, flinging flip-flops upward toward Heaven.

And the olders in the kitchen blend smoothies of ripe berries while the dog sleeps at my feet, and the sun shines.


But there is a hole in the line up.
An empty place where I wish our five-year-old Selah was also sitting-smiling.
Sipping her smoothie with them.
But the hole is not forever.
One day all will be complete and–

“We should always seek to keep Heaven in our line of sight”
–Randy Alcorn

And today is a taste of Isaiah 51:3 for me–

“Indeed, the Lord will comfort Zion;
He will comfort all her waste places
And her desert like the garden of the Lord;
Joy and gladness will be found in her,
Thanksgiving and the sound of a melody.”

All of God’s whispers of love for us continue on.


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  1. It’s so sweet that the Doctor remembers every year. That just brings tears to my eyes. I will be praying for you and your cousin today.

    • i know…
      i can’t even believe it each year when a card arrives.
      I cry each time.
      And all of her doctors came to the memorial…just so, so incredible.
      We love Doernbecher Children’s Hospital…

  2. Love you. #selah

  3. Wow! Praying for you and your cousin.

  4. Aubrie Drayer says:

    I look forward to meeting sweet Selah someday. Thanks for sharing her with us.

  5. Tricia Keierleber says:

    That was so sweet of her Dr. say this every year, but I’m in tears! Thinking of y’all and Selah today!

  6. Much love and many prayers.

    • I know you know…
      I don’t even need to write out why and how I know you “get this”
      You live-walk in this reality day to day.
      I honestly pray for you each morning when I first log on.
      So thankful for you sweet friend. I don’t say it enough…

  7. Prayers and hugs to you, friend!

  8. Lisa Jacobson says:

    You’ve said it so beautifully and warmly and truly. “One day all will be complete and WHOLE.” I love that and cling to it – needing it some times more than others.

    Praying for dear baby Oliver’s family. And for you too, today.

    • Thank you Lisa…
      I’m so thankful that our paths have crossed.
      I really, truly hope to know you IRL.
      Praying that God will allow for that reality. Have so appreciated your posts at Darlene’s.

  9. Carissa @ Sole Sisters Running says:

    I’m so sorry Kara. For you, for your cousin. Having had a taste of grief last week (just a taste really and yet it rocked my world) I sympathize a little more than I otherwise could have and I see that God uses these sorrows to help us help others. I am thankful your cousin has you during this sad time.

    • I’ve been praying for you…
      There’s this place, I think, where God allows Heaven to come close…to become a reality. I’ve been praying for all (especially those close to you) who were impacted by what God allowed you to come close to last week…I’m sure you are still walking through a grief process. We have been praying for your family.

  10. Oh Kara, a precious reminder to give thanks and joy for those in our midst and pray for those we love who are walking the road of loss. My heart hurts for your cousin. I’ll be praying for their family.

  11. Mattie Wells says:

    Praying for your heart Kara. Does it ever get easier? Missing my two babies tonight and came across your post…just sending love and prayers <3

    • Oh Mattie….
      We need to talk.
      I’m so sorry for how your heart must hurt.
      It does get easier.
      I was just thinking that this year (while I wept in church today because they played a “Selah song”.
      It’s always a tender spot…always a place that the tears resurface…but I promise you…cling to Him…it does get easier. And keep Heaven in your line of sight…always on the horizon.
      Message me at if you ever need an ear…
      Love, K

  12. Sweet peace in these days – praying for your cousin and for your family too. Grace friend…

  13. Cindy Hamilton says:

    Yes! Kara….Heaven is sometimes so close that we can feel the love from those who’ve gone before. Beautiful.

  14. Such a sweet post. May God bring you blessed reassurance of His undying hope and love!

  15. LeAnn Williams says:

    What a lovely heartfelt post; it was sweet. I feel sad for your cousin. Just as you know the healing will come but the missing them won’t. I pray that right now they will feeling the comfort of the spirit as they go through their grieving moments.
    Blessings for the hope you share.

  16. Eve Stoughton says:

    Kara – I had been meaning to message you for an update on Baby Oliver when I saw this post. :( Our hearts ache for your cousin and her family. We had been praying for them and cannot imagine the rawness of their pain. I know you know it first-hand, and while I’m sure that’s a comfort to your cousin, I’m sure you wouldn’t have chosen to be the one “to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we
    ourselves are comforted by God.” Thank you for sharing though, as it is a reminder to not only cherish each moment, but also to reach out and pray for those who are hurting. We will continue to pray for healing.

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