Saturday, September 10, 2011

Mama T and Amy... then back home

Mama T and Amy, my mug in Mama T's hand
Today we head back home. We will start the morning with breakfast with Mama T (Sarah Rifes mom) and Amy. Mama T is someone that's brings goodness to life.  She glows with joy and Jesus. We spent the morning  listening as she told us of Mark's renovation project.   Mama T is so proud of her new kitchen. Mark did an amazing job.  I love how she desired not for it to be just a place to cook food but a place for community and sharing and understanding Jesus better. Once I meet Mama T, I began to understand why Sarah had so many best friends.  She is so sweet and caring.  We shared stories and laughed and cried and we also shared tools that help believers cope with grief. The past and present of Mark connected and his life became clearer. We enjoyed fresh mango, longon and lilikoi.  Eating all of these exotic fruits actually allowed my view of our creator God to broaden.  I was actively searching for a memorial to remember the trip and Mark. Little did I know it would be playing into a larger story over the past year. When my father died last year I was looking for something practical to take home from his kitchen, something I could use and something I know he enjoyed. It happened to be a Disney mug I can remember him drinking coffee out of.  Mama T offered me coffee and I said I loved the mug.  She said for me to take it as a gift.  I couldn't have purchased a more memorable gift. The connection didn't hit me till later. Dale and I were chatting about how some drink coffee for the caffeine and others for a hobby and others for both. But coffee seems to be a great tool to bring people together and not just to use.  Back to my earlier blog when I wanted to sense the ebb and flow of relationships.  God created us for relationships.  To share joy and to share grief. We have experienced both on the trip. Community is important and what we do with it is often abused.  We left Mama T' and Amy with heavy and sad hearts but also strengthened because we are better for knowing them.  Now back to Hilo to get some souvenirs for the kids.
I am a blessed man

The botanical gardens was our next destination before heading to the airport. It was neat to see how a dream of a philanthropist created a sanctuary of plants and trees and birds for others to enter. It is almost a sensory overload as so many vibrant colors, textures and views are displayed.

I am so thankful for amazing friends in Dale and Jonalyn.  They are friends that know us and grow us.  We are grateful we shared this journey with them.

Audra and I flew out of Kona and Dale and Jonalyn and Finn flew out of Hilo.  We left Hilo and headed to the other side of the island. Thankful we can carry the memories.  Heavily anticipating the reunion with our children and very thankful for those who pitched in and loved them.  If it wasn't for the kids I am pretty sure we would have missed our flight:-)  I am looking forward to one day seeing Mark on the streets with no names.
a hui hou

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