tic (ys’ pres of events) lives on the side of a hill, and has a deck that faces west. you can’t quite see the ocean from his deck, because there’s another hill several miles away, blocking the view. but there are still amazing sunset views. and since yaconelli loved sunsets so much (his hawaii trip pix would always be 90% sunset shots), we’ve gathered as a ys staff a few times in the last couple years to watch the sunset together.
last night was perfect — we’ve had santa ana winds, so the weather is extremely warm and clear. and the sunset last night was fantastic. about 5 minutes before it hit the horizon, we all gathered around in silence and thought of mike. a few sniffles were heard here and there; but otherwise, it was totally silent as the yellow to orange to red giant orb slipped below the horizon. then, in that after-moment of silence, karla yaconelli let out a “WOO-HOO!”, and we all raised our glasses.
immediately following the toast, i talked about how — with two years under our grief-belts, and so many good things — we’ve had the opportunity to experience some perspective on mike’s death. but there’s an “in your face” shock and grief — that we all know because of our experience two years ago — that so many of our friends are going through this weekend.
our good friend and free-lance editor, randy southern, lost his wife after a multi-year struggle with cancer, friday night. randy has 9-, 7-, and 4-year-old kids.
our good friends chris and lisa seay, david and toni crowder, jack, mike h, mike d, jason and jeremy (the david crowder band) have lost a very dear friend in kyle lake. not to mention the hundreds of people in kyle’s church, and his wife and little kids.
and our good friend and perennial convention volunteer, dave pentecost, was living through the one-year anniversary of his own wife’s death yesterday.
so we prayed. we prayed for our friends, and for those we don’t know. we prayed for strength and peace. we prayed that god wouldn’t feel distant to them at this time, but that they would have a tangible sense of god’s closeness, god’s care, god’s embrace.
then we went inside, had fantastic pizza (we ARE youth workers, after all), and watched the DVD of yaconelli’s last talk at the charlotte youth workers convention two years ago — which was just wonderful.
and how it’s halloween. weird.