Friday, January 20, 2012

Tribute Thursday

Today I’d like to pay tribute to a woman I knew from my church – Daveida. She went home to be with the Lord on January 12th, and Thursday I attended her funeral, more appropriately called “a celebration of her life.” She was only 41, but had battled breast cancer for the last six years. She left behind three children, an 8-month old grandson, and uncounted family and friends who will miss her dearly.

I met Daveida about 18 months ago as she was going through a battle with this horrific disease, and even then she had so much courage, strength and faith in her Lord. She was a soft-spoken, calm woman with a great sense of humor, and there was a peace whenever you were in her presence. She rallied back from that battle – the doctors really didn’t expect her to make it through Christmas last year. But she did, and then some, living more than a year later. It was only in the last several months that yet another battle began, and it moved swiftly.

Even with the physical ravages she encountered, Daveida was beautiful and had a smile that would light up the room. Yet this beauty was overshadowed by the beauty of her heart and soul. She would reach out to others even from her hospital bed to see how they were, how she could pray for them, and what could she do for them.

There were literally hundreds of people at her life celebration service, which was a heartbreakingly sad yet joyful remembrance of this inspirational woman. We are sad and mourn for our loss, yet we celebrate her and thank God for the incredible privilege of having shared in her life. I wish I had gotten to know her better, but I will forever be changed by the moments we did have together. She taught us how to live, and how to die.

Goodbye for now, Daveida…

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