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Learning to number our days

I stood at the ice-cold glass staring out into the settling darkness. I can remember feeling the pressing cold on my fingertips as I fervently whispered, “God, please let them find him. Please let him be alive.”

A few days later, my bones chilled and quaked as my 10-year-old brother was buried in the local cemetery. At the time I was 15, and his tragic death was my first tangible experience of human frailty. His death opened a new, unwanted journey for my family. And for me, an impressionable teen, it left a heart-mess of anger, bitterness, uncertainty and mistrust of a God who sovereignly allowed the tragedy. 

Some twenty years later I stood, camera in hand, as ten candles flickered on top of a birthday cake. My firstborn grinned as family gathered to sing. She blew out her candles. I snapped some pictures. On one hand, I was joyous, for a tenth birthday is a worthy celebration. On the other hand, I could feel rising dread as my daughter turned the same age of my brother when I last…

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