Saturday, July 10, 2010

The day we arrived back in the country we lost a precious friend.  James Olson was a great man of God.  
His smiled put you at ease instantly.  He never seemed to have a non-intentional conversation.  When he asked you to go out to eat after church, it was never "hey we're going out, you guys want to go?"  Instead he would walk up to you, look you directly in the eye, and with pure sincerity he would say something like "we would really love to spend some time with you this afternoon.  We'd love to chat with you and see how your week was and what's going on in your life"  
Every conversation with James led to the cross, Christ and his passion for a loving God!
Today we celebrated his life.  
Sharri, his precious wife, asked us all to adhere to a strict dress suits, no ties, casual, and bright....Hawaiian shirts were suggested even.  This was to be a true celebration of this man who's smile never seemed to leave his face.  Who touched the lives of everyone he came into contact with.
Whose light SHONE to all around him!!
I've read messages from people who never met him, but had chatted with him on HAMM radio (a passion of his) about the impact he made on their lives even though they never actually laid eyes on him.  Today at the service a friend from California who he chatted with each day recalled how when he found out about our loss of James the entire trading room floor where he worked was torn up and crying.  They'd never met James in person....only knew him over the phone from when he called his friend
each day.  
Wow....just wow....
I knew he had that impact on me.  
I knew he had that impact on my children.
I knew he had that impact on my husband
I knew he had that impact on all the teens from our congregation who have spent the last 3 days gathered at his home helping to support his wife and children...and each other.

I knew...I knew in my heart how much impact this man made in this world in his short time on this earth.  
But looking around today at the over 600 people who gathered to celebrate this amazing man....
It made me want to be better.  
because every conversation with this man made me want to be better.
Made me want to be happier.
Made me want to smile more.
Made me want to be more content.
Made me want to love more fully and laugh more richly.
Made me remember that Christ is the center of my life! will be missed!
Your impact on all of us who were blessed to have known you, is phenomenal.  
We will live life differently because of you.
Your memory alone makes us better people!

Thank you James!
Thank you God for allowing us to know him, and be touched by him!!
Thank you for reminding us through James that each moment is precious,
each moment an opportunity to touch a life, or save a soul!
Thank you for reminding us that each moment is one that we should
spend ensuring that we are working for you God and making you proud!


Anonymous said...

Well said Rachee. Saturday was a day of celebration knowing that James is with out Lord & Savior Jesus Christ. I could have sat there the entire day and listened to his life...James truly lived like he was dying. It hurts. I've been crying out to Jesus because it hurts really, really badly to loose such a Godly man. It does help seeing Sharri so, so tough! So, so strong. The world is less brighter today. All that we love becomes a part of us!

Sara said...

Hi dear friends,
I am sad for you to lose someone so special. And I'm sad for the timing cause I know that the first days back are hard anyway. Now there is a whole other load of emtions to sort though...
I think both of these things, coming back from Honduras and losing someone in death, remind us that this world is not our home! What a treasure we have to look forward to in heaven! May His peace and comfort rein in your hearts in the coming days!
Miss you and love you,
Sara and family

Laura at By the Bushel said...

Thinking of you all Rachel. Praying for peace & comfort. Knowing this must a hard time, I'm sure it is a blessing to remember such a fine man, & his love for Christ. Love- laura