True Joy

I just met an incredibly beautiful family.

They came to visit my neighbors and I had heard all about them.  There are 12 children in this family, by the way.  Yes,  I said twelve!  Six months ago, they lost their second oldest son in a drowning accident.  And just this month they lost their father to cancer.  In both cases they had believed God would miraculously heal their loved ones, and both times He decided to take them home.  I had heard about their strong faith, their love for the Lord and their steadfast hope in Him.  I had heard about all these things, yet my own heart was troubled for them and I wondered how they would bear all the grief they had been through.  I was anxious to meet them and a little nervous, too.  What do you say to a family that has experienced so much loss? 

I needn't have been afraid.  I was introduced to them in a whirlwind--twelve faces and names to remember.  But one defining characteristic of them all:  peace.  They were radiant with the strength that comes from the peace of Jesus.  They wore on their faces a joy that can only come from an unmovable faith in the Lord.  And do you want to know the most amazing part?  They traveled from several states away to minister to those in their family that are not saved.  Can you imagine taking your eleven children on a mission trip right after losing a son and a husband?   This mother's faith is great.  What a testimony she has.  I know their lives and their story has already made a lasting impression on my life.  We gathered together in my neighbor's living room and my dear husband played guitar for nearly two hours.  We sang and worshipped our God who gives and takes away.  And it wasn't a chore for them.  They sang with joyful abandon.


Amy said...

Is this the Hingle family? If so that's kind of crazy - I've read about them on one of my favorite blogs (Amy's Humble Musings - she's their neighbor).

Joye said...

Yes! It is the Hingles! That's so exciting! They are for real!

Summer said...

Whew...just got chills...seriously.... :)

Hearing stories like this just warm my heart and make me sooo thankful that I am trying every day to get closer to the Lord and make a conscious effort to minister to everyone I come into contact with....Sometimes, I wonder if I am even making a difference...if it's really "worth it"......but, then I hear a story like this...and I'm awe-struck and inspired once again...

I am totally catching up on all of your blogs...I just love reading what you write....


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