Wednesday, April 14, 2010


Fields of Flowers
Blooming brightly
Daisies and Marigolds
Tulips and Roses
The colors explode in patches
Under the smiling sunshine
A gentle breeze moves through,
The green grass ripples slightly
All is peaceful
All is beautiful
In this spring moment

yeah, I wrote that in 9th grade and you know you liked it...


Sunday, April 4, 2010

Today is Easter.

I have decided that this is probably one of if not my favorite day/holiday of the year. The weather is typically amazing. Everything is blooming. People start wearing springy clothes. And Easter Sunday meals are always incredible and you always eat far too much.

This Easter was really good but also hard. Easter service this morning was yet another daily reminder of God's love for me. His extravagant and lavish love for me. I love the Easter story. It never gets old. It is always an incredible reminder of the God that I serve and who takes care of me.

Last Easter was the first one I had away from my family and that was weird but also really good because I was able to spend it with some wonderful families here in Asheville.

This Easter was great but hard and sad. This weekend I went and stayed with my friend Betsy Corry. She lives in a blue barn in which the top of it has been finished out into a very fun livable area. She only lives 15 minutes away, but I felt like I had left town. Friday brought much needed sun and high temperatures so we took advantage of that and laid out on her roof for a few hours. Then after a short but non the less enjoyable visit to the Sloan house, we went downtown for the Asheville Drum Circle. Basically, lots of people get together downtown and play drums, tambourines, flutes, and any other miscellaneous instrument. Saturday we went running and did a crazy ab workout. Then we laid out again. The rest of the afternoon/evening was spent on the couch. Seriously, we were destroyed and too tired to move.

This morning we woke up and went to the early service at church. It had been awhile since I had gone to the early service but the waking up early was worth it. Of course afterwards we laid out on her roof for another 2 hours. We then spent the rest of the afternoon with a bunch of friends and families who live here in Asheville eating firsts, seconds, thirds, and fourths of the delicious food everybody prepared. Hard life, I know.

Church was great this morning and as I mentioned above I was reminded of God's ever present, never ceasing, always pursuing, lavish love for me no matter what I do or who I am.
But I was also reminded of the fact that I never get to call my lovable brother, John Noll, and tell him Happy Easter. Today I missed John deeper than I have missed him in several months. He always loved Easter. I remembered the many Easters all 5 of us would be locked in a room while our parents hid the eggs. One year we made a movie while were waiting of which John was the star of, of course. I thought about that video and smiled and then cried knowing that there will never be anymore of those. I thought about his smile, his laugh, his sense of humor. I thought about how much he loved me and everyone around him.

My mom sent me a book called Lament for A Son by Nicholas Wolterstorff. The book is about him losing his son at age 25 due to a mountain climbing accident. It was a good read and a good perspective on some of the aspects of mourning a brother and a son. This quote is what stuck out the most to me and is what makes me the saddest about John being gone.

"It is the neverness that is so painful.
Never again to be here with us-never to sit
with us at the table, to travel with us,
never to laugh with us, never to cry with us,
never to embrace us as he leaves for school, never to see
his brothers and sister marry. All of the rest of our
lives we must live without him.
Only our death can stop the pain of his death.
A month, a year, five years-with that I
could live. But not this forever."

It is this neverness that hurts the most. I know that this neverness only applies to while I am living on this earth, but knowing that I have to continue in this live without him hurts deep within. It is still hard to imagine him no longer being in Texas to greet me with his big goofy grin when I come home from college. Or to tease me about boys. I would give anything to hear that loud crazy gut bursting laugh of his. And today I was reminded of just how much I truly miss that.

I know that John actually got to spend this Easter with Jesus and that someday again I will see him, but right now the neverness in this life is hard to grasp.

The only thing I know and can hold onto is God's lavish and unbelievable love for me. He shows me in the spring blossoms, the people who surround me, the family in which he has placed me, by gently whispering it into my ear even when I refuse to listen. There is no doubt about that anymore.

"But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope:
the steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning."
-Lamentations 3:22

John Noll I miss you and always will....