Monday, November 3, 2008

My sweet cousin

Last week my cousin gave birth to her first baby....Jenna Leann. After a planned c-section, Jami was not feeling well at all and the doctor found that she needed a blood transfusion. They gave her 2 units of blood and, though she still did not feel well, at least was able to make it home. She and her husband, Josh, took their new baby home, but last evening (Sunday), Jami fainted at home and was rushed to the hospital. She passed away sometime during that time, and they could not help her at the hospital. She was somewhere around the age of 30 or 31. First, I want to praise the Lord that Jami knew Him as her Savior. The Bible says, "I am the resurrection and the life. He that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live. And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die." These are the words the Lord used to comfort me so often while my dad was sick in the hospital. I was rocking my little Kara tonight before bed, and those words came rushing back to my mind. I have been so concerned for my aunt and uncle (Jami's parents) and my other cousin, Michelle (Jami's sister), and my heart has just been broken all day for them. I am so glad that God promises He will never leave us or forsake us, that we can cast all our care on Him, because He cares for us.
I wanted to show you a picture of my sweet cousin, Jami. She is pictured here with my dad and my Uncle Jack (another of our uncles).

I have always had a special relationship with Jami and Michelle. The three of us are so close in age. I have tons of memories of playing and getting in trouble at Grandma and Grandpa Slye's house. We played the penny game on the stairs guessing which hand the penny was in and moving up a step for every right answer =) (I know, boring...but there wasn't much to do!) We broke the bed one day by jumping on it and got in A LOT of trouble for that! We spent a week one summer swimming in their neighbor's pool...such fun! They always had cans of soda in their fridge (who wouldn't like that as a kid?!). As we grew older, Jami and I had lots of stories to share about our classrooms. We had both studied elementary education in college. Jami was a much better teacher than I ever was though! She even won an award for the best student teacher during her senior year at Clarion University! One of my favorite things about Jami was her great sense of humor and the way she told stories. She made me laugh harder than anyone with her storytelling. I can't share the whole thing here (a little on the risque side), but her story about the crockpot made me cry with laughter. A bunch of us cousins stood around the funeral home at my grandma's funeral listening to her many stories to pass the time at the viewing. I'm just so sorry that this week I'll be attending HER viewing.
The last and most important thing I wanted to write about was Jami's love for Christ. Jami married a man named Scott about 9 or 10 years ago. Scott was not a Christian and after a few years of marriage, left Jami, treating her very badly. Through that experience I never once heard Jami speak hatefully about Scott, but rather, turned her attention and focus to her Savior, Jesus Christ. Over the next few years, while going through her divorce, Jami talked so much about how God was meeting her needs and she maintained such a joyful spirit. She continued to come to all the normal family gatherings, only this time by herself. You would never have known the pain she was going through. A few years ago, at a Bible study, Jami met a wonderful Christian man named Josh. The Lord gave her a wonderful gift in opportunity to be married again. 10 months ago they found out that they were going to have a baby. As with most pregnancies, everyone was so thrilled that God had given Jami this treasure. Please pray for little Jenna, not even 1 week old and without a mommy.
Thank you for giving me the opportunity to share my thoughts. I know things were a little random. The body of Christ is such a gift. We covet your prayers for our family. I, personally, covet your prayers as I try to minister to my family members who are so heart-broken. I would love to hear any promises from Scripture that you would like to share.


Laura D said...

Thanks for sharing. I will be praying for all involved. Especially that many may receive Christ through your cousins Godly example and life.

The first Scripture that came to mind was Psalms 23...Specifically, "The Lord is MY Shepherd, I shall not be in want....Even though I walk
through the valley of the shadow of death,I will fear no evil,for YOU are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me." I know there are many others.

I will be praying the Lord gives you an extra amount of grace and peace in the coming days as you attend the viewing and funeral.

Karis said...

Oh Becky...tears are in my eyes and I don't even know her. I am so thankful to hear of her faith in God, but I ache for all of you in her family. Thanks for sharing with us both about Jami's life and about memories you had with her.

I also know that I don't think often enough that each day could be my last and how am I using it. I feel so "young" She was my age.

I love you, my friend. Looking forward to talking to you tonight if all works out. I will pray for her family after I post this.

Erin said...

This verse came to my mind...

Psalms 34:18 The Lord is near the brokenhearted; He saves those crushed in spirit.

I am praying for you and all those missing this young lady. May you all sense His nearness in the coming days...


Travis and Becky said...

i am so thankful for your kind words. these verses are really special and important to meditate on. thank you!

Andy and Davina said...

Hey, you and I will be praying for you and your family and for Jami's husband and little girl.

Conleys said...

I too was brought to tears as I read this story. My heart aches for this husband and little baby also. We have been going through some things also which have caused us to search the Scriptures for comfort. The verse that comes to mind is Deut 31:8 "The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged." Praying for you- Shannon

jeileenbaylor said...

oh Becky - I am so sorry to hear about your cousin. What a tragic loss - and yet we know that God is good. We will continue to pray for her husband and new baby.