To the family of Gabby Doolin

I’ve never understood the most important verse in the bible, John 3:16:  

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

I’ve never understood the bible’s reference to the Father’s sacrifice.  I’ve never understood what the bible meant when it spoke of the Father’s suffering, considering that He knew beforehand that Jesus’s pain was only temporal, that it wouldn’t last forever and that Jesus would rise again to be seated beside His Father in glory.

On November 14th of 2015, a beautiful little girl in a city nearby lost her life in a way that few of us will ever forget.  And it occurs to me, Mr. and Mrs. Doolin, that you must understand the sacrifice that God the Father made, when He allowed His Son to be placed upon that cross.  You must know in a way that many others never will, how the whole of your existence can narrow down to one brief point in time.  How everything you are and everything you feel and all that you can think about is reduced to a heartbeat, a breath, a single moment in the face of eternity.  A moment in time when the pain of a child becomes the excruciating pain of a father, the unbearable pain of a mother.

I think you understand.

Mr. and Mrs. Doolin, I want you to know that I’m praying for you.  There is hardly a day that goes by when I don’t think of you and your beautiful little girl.  I think of her with Jesus.  I think of how she, like Him, is now in a place of no more suffering, no more pain.  I pray for you and all of your family.  I pray that when you see the face of your daughter, you see her as she is in heaven, as she is right now.  I pray that love is what you see when you think of her, the love that surrounds her eternally and always.  I pray that when you see the image of your precious daughter in your mind’s eye, you see the image of Jesus, smiling down on her, and your beautiful daughter smiling up at Him.  Safe.  Loved.  Forever.

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