Saturday, February 07, 2009

With Our Savior

Andrew is now in the presence of Jesus. We praise the Lord that He called Andrew to be His and that Andrew is now rejoicing before the throne of grace without pain or suffering. He went at 12:35pm Central time. All his family was around him to hold his hand as he went peacefully.

Please continue to pray for AJ and Gracie, his mom and dad, his brother and sister, and me that the peace of Christ would continue to be a comfort to us.

More details on the funeral will be forthcoming. We would love for whomever can make it to be there. The viewings will be on Tuesday at Washburn-Mcreavy Funeral Home in Eden Prairie and the memorial service on Wednesday at Redeemer Bible Church in Minnetonka, MN.

Details for airline bereavement rates are to follow.

Also in lieu of flowers, a fund will be set up for AJ and Gracie. More details on that to come as well, but if you are interested in contributing, please email fundforajandgracie@gmail.com and details will be sent to you when they are available.

Thank you all for praying and for your encouraging remarks and for continuing to lift us up in your prayers.

Washburn-Mcreavy Funeral Home
Eden Prairie
7625 Mitchell Road
Eden Prairie, MN 55344
(952)975-0400

Redeemer Bible Church
16205 Highway 7
Minnetonka, MN 55345
(952) 935-2425

61 comments:

  1. Crying with you, and rejoicing that he is no longer in pain...rejoicing that he is with our Savior.

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  2. Indeed, praise God for Andrew is now Home.

    Grace, my thoughts are with you, dear sister. May the Lord be your comfort and your shield.

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  3. "All the way my Savior leads me
    O the fullness of His love!
    "Perfect rest to me is promised
    In my Father’s house above.
    When my spirit, clothed immortal,
    Wings its flight to realms of day
    This my song through endless ages—
    Jesus led me all the way;
    This my song through endless ages—
    Jesus led me all the way."

    ---Fanny Crosby

    Praying for you, Grace. So
    thankful his suffering is over
    and he is Home.

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  4. Psalm 116:15...

    Precious in the sight of the Lord
    is the death of His godly ones.

    Rejoicing and weeping.

    Jim and Gail

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  5. Oh Grace, we love you and we are crying with you. We are so so sorry.

    Todd, Julie and family

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  6. We've never met, but I have been praying for your family. I will most certainly be keeping you, Gracie, and AJ in my prayers! May God grant your hearts an overwhelming sense of peace in a very difficult time. Praise Him!

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  7. We are praying for you. Peace of Christ to you and yours. Love, Phil and Kathleen Fung

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  8. Grace,

    I'm so sorry to hear about your great loss. I went through a similar situation with my grandmother who had lung and brain cancer, and I was at her bedside when she passed away. It's a very bittersweet thing to see your loved one go. On one hand, you don't want to them to leave, and you wonder how you'll ever get on without them; on the other, you're just relieved that they are no longer in pain and free of the physical ailments that they suffered from. Losing Andrew is a great loss to all of us, as he was a wonderful, positive person. It was always assuring that there were people like Andrew in this world. Please let us know when you have the info for AJ and Gracie's fund. We want to help out however we can.

    Regards,
    Sharon and Stu Hong

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  9. We've never met you, but we are grateful for the privilege of praying for you and your family.

    Tim and Jennie
    Kansas

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  10. wish we could be there with you gracie....love you...your in our prayers rebekah and gabe zepeda

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  11. Praying for you with tears. May our dearest, most wonderful Lord and Savior comfort and keep you in His arms. I lack words to express my grief for you all.
    Love in Christ,
    Liesy Turnbull and Family
    (Grace Bible Church)

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  12. My prayers are with you, and your family ...May God make His presence and comfort uniquely known to you as you walk the path of grief. If you ever feel like talking, feel free to ask Julie for my email. I'm a good listener. With love in Him . . .

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  13. So sorry to hear of your loss. I'll be praying for you as you face the future without your beloved. Thank the Lord that He comforts us in all our sorrows, and bears us in His arms as the Good Shepherd.

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  14. We grieve and rejoice with you. Our continued prayers for you and the family.

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  15. Our love & prayers are with you all. This verse made me think of Andrew today:

    "Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial: for once he has passed the test, he will receive the crown of life, which the Lord has promised to those who love Him." James 1:12

    Andrew certainly passed the test with flying colors. Thank you for sharing and letting God use you in the lives of so many of us.

    Praying for you,

    The Hehe family, GBC. Marysville,WA

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  16. We are there with you Grace. I know Andrew is rejoicing in front our Father in heaven. Praise the Lord for His Son Jesus Christ.

    Praying for you and your family,

    Yi-Jen

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  17. We rejoice that Andrew was with his earthly family before he went peacefully to join his heavenly family in heaven. We are so joyful to know that Andrew, in his new, glorified, and perfect body, is at the moment worshipping our Almighty Creator.

    We are praying for you, AJ, Gracie, and your and the whole Mark family -- we KNOW that the peace of God, which surpasses ALL nunderstanding, WILL guard your heart and mind through Christ Jesus.

    Daniel and Pam (Kotchavong) Lee

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  18. Grace our hearts and prayers are with you. Rest in the Lord and lean only on Him. With love and sorrow.
    Mark and Pam
    GBC
    Marysville, WA

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  19. We are so saddened by Andrews passing, thankful for Andrew, for his gain. Missing our friends and praying for the peace that passes understanding.
    We love you and are praying with you.
    The Jason Lewis Family

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  20. Dear Grace:
    We weep with you and at the same time thankful that Andrew is no longer in pain, but enjoying the presence of our Lord. We pray for you, AJ, Gracie and Andrew's family for peace and strength. May cherished memories of Andrew comfort you during this difficult time,
    Blessings and Ps.121,
    Gloria and family in NJ

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  21. Words fail me at times such as this. May the Lord bless your family richly, in the valleys and on the mountain tops.

    Hugs and prayers, Farrah

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  22. Dear Grace,
    We have been praying for you and we are so encouraged that you have showed us what it means to be a godly wife to your husband during this most difficult time. We are confident that God will continue to provide the love and care that you need to get through the loss you are experiencing. Our love to you and your family.
    Dan & Denise DeFalco (CBC)

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  23. It's somehow still so difficult to deal with even though it was so inevitable in these last 24 hours. I promise all of you that God will get us through this, what an amazing man of God Andrew was. I didn't know him super-well but I was blessed to have him in my life too. Will be praying for you, Grace, as you take on this new role in your family. May the strength of the Spirit be upon you each and everyday.

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  24. We are praying for you and your family. We are sad that Andrew is not here but we rejoice that he is with Christ.

    Steven & Angie

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  25. "For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus. For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep. For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words." -1Thes.4:14-18

    We look forward to seeing Andrew on that day. What an amazing life that God used (and will continue to use) for His glory.

    Praying for your family and grieving/rejoicing with you.

    Keith and Christina
    Jacksonville, FL

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  26. We're so sorry for your loss. We feel very lucky to have spent the 2 weeks at the center with you in November. We will remember Andrew with a smile on his face and love in his heart.

    You, AJ and Gracie will always have a special place in our hearts.

    Much Love,
    Sherrie & Ron

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  27. Grace,

    We have never met. I came by your story through Lorie Schnell's facebook page. What a true testament you and Andrew are to the comfort and strength that God can bring to us in our darkest times. Your story has touched my heart deeply. I have been and will continue to pray for you and your family as you enter this next phase in your life. Oh what a comfort to know that Andrew is safe in the arms of his Father tonight.

    God's blessings, strength, and comfort to you...

    Anjanette Treadway
    Carroll, IA

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  28. Grace,
    I have no words to say that will take the pain and heartache away. I can only encourage you that the same Sovereign Almighty God who has loved you and who has been faithful to you up until this point will continue to love you and be faithful to you because God is unchanging and God is love.

    Here's a hymn I found that may be of comfort. I'll be praying for you and the kids and Andrew's family.

    Love,
    Amy Lin


    Just A Little While
    By E.M. Bartlett

    Soon this life will all be over,
    And our pilgrimage will end.
    Soon we'll take our heavenly journey,
    Be at home again with friends
    Heaven's gates are standing open
    Waiting for our entrance there
    Some sweet day we're going over
    All the beauties there to share.

    Soon we'll see the light of morning
    Then the new day will begin
    Soon we'll hear the Father calling,
    "Come my children, enter in."
    Then we'll hear a choir of angels
    Singing out the victory song,
    All our troubles will be ended
    And we'll live with heaven's throng

    Soon we'll meet again our loved ones
    And we'll take them by the hand,
    Soon we'll press them to our bosom
    Over in the promised land;
    Then we'll be at home forever,
    Throughout all eternity,
    What a blessed, blessed morning
    That eternal morn shall be.

    Just a Little while to stay here
    Just a little while to wait
    Just a little while to labor
    In the path that's always straight
    Just a little more of trouble
    In this low and sinful state
    Then we'll enter Heaven's portals,
    Sweeping through the pearly gates.

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  29. Dear Grace,

    You and your family are in our prayers. We are so sad to hear this news and also so comforted by knowing that, "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined the things that God has prepared for those who love him."

    Much love,

    Julie, Will and Ella

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  30. Grace,

    I only found out this blog yesterday as i was searching the internet. I am very sorry to hear your loss. I understand how much you loved him. I hope that you stay strong in the Lord, and put all of your trust in Him.

    Im Praying for you.

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  31. I've been praying and will continue to pray for your family. I pray that God will give you the grace and strength to continue each day.

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  32. Grace, thank you so much for sharing Andrew, your struggles and your testamony with the world. Andrew's faith has made a difference in so many peoples lives, we will never know how many have givin there lives to Christ because of the Faith that you and Andrew have shared. I weep with joy as I imagine Andrew walking in the presence our Lord Jesus, and I weep with sorrow that he is no longer with us here on earth. You and your children will forever be in our prayers. We love you, Jarrod and Lori Cooper, and the Kids, Lake Stevens, WA

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  33. Dear Grace,

    We grieve and rejoice with you. We're still praying for you, Gracie, AJ, and Andrew's family. Please know that Andrew's life was not in vain; he has encouraged many and has done his Father's work well.

    Much Love, Helen&John

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  34. praise god that andrew is in a new body, free of suffering and in the prescence of the lord indeed.

    i agree with what has been stated here that his life was not in vain.

    may this time of mourning be a healthy one for you guys and for us grieving along with you.

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  35. dear grace
    My prayers go out to u and ur family
    I went to high school with andrew and just had to write reading the blog has been very inspirational.
    I'm sure he is at ease with the Lord now my thoughts and prayers will be with him
    Chris

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  36. Dear Grace & Family,

    Your family has been and will continue to be in our prayers. Keep your eyes on the Lord - He will sustain you, comfort you, guide you and lead you. God used his life in a BIG way. What a testimony you and Andrew have been to so many. Keep the faith and keep grounded on / in Him.

    With much love and prayers to you and your family, The Hall family (GBC)

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  37. It is indeed a praise that Andrew is with our Lord, but I know that you will miss his physical presence. I'll be praying for you and your family during this time, that the Lord would comfort and sustain you.

    Love in Christ,
    Allison

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  38. i love you grace! thank you for the amazing testimony you and andrew left behind even in the midst of pain and suffering. thankful that andrew is now without pain and sorrow in the presence of our Lord, but i know you miss him so! praying for you and yours.

    blessings,
    sarah [[israel]] dickinson

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  39. I found your blog from a friend on facebook. I sat here tonight at 12:19 AM and read it in full. When I got to the end, really the beginning for you, I was crying. Not for you, but with you and your family. Thank you for sharing your most personal feeling, thoughts and emotions all for the glory of God. I was so encouraged, yet feel the pain of your loss. I will hold you dear in my heart and pray for you ever so much. Please know that there are many sisters and brothers in Christ who love you and are with you in this difficult time. My God be a true encouragement to your broken heart, for He is our father.

    Hugs from California,

    Julie

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  40. somehow today eternity seems so much closer and even more desirable than ever. Though I never knew Andrew, he has discipled me greatly through his example of trust in the Lord, commitment to the Gospel and great love for his family in the midst of some of the most difficult suffering.

    Grace, you as well have shepherded my heart. What a godly woman and example you are! Thank you for LIVING unconditional love, self-sacrifice, gentle and kind love toward Andrew and your children. Thank you for opening your heart with your struggles and allowing Christ to be magnified in your weakness. You have truly shown what it is to walk with Him and allow Him to form you into His likeness. Through your life, Andrew's life and death, I can truly say I love Christ more. I see Him more clearly, long for eternity all the more and learn to value less the things of this world. If only the Lord would grant me the faith I saw demonstrated in the two of you that I, too, might face suffering and even death with a faith-filled love for God and selfless service toward others.

    I am humbled and changed through all He has done and will continue to do through you. Praise be to God for His great love and mercy toward us.

    "...and the saints below join with the saints above rejoicing in the risen Lamb...my heart is filled with a thousand songs proclaiming the glories of Calvary..."

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  41. Grace,
    Peace be with you. Rejoice that Andrew is no longer suffering but is now Home. Our prayers are with you.
    Terrie and Michael
    CIBC

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  42. Praise the Lord that Andrew is with the Lord now and was such a wonderful blessing to all of us while he was here. We shed tears because we will greatly miss him, but also because we are rejoicing that he is in glory now, complete and without suffering. Our God is faithful, Grace, and He will sustain you and the kids. Thank you for your steadfast love. We will be praying much for you, AJ & Gracie. Love you.

    Rick, Julie, & Family

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  43. My husband and I are praying for you. We have been following your blog over the last few days. The Lord is good in ALL things...we will continue to pray for you on a daily basis as you continue your path.

    -The Holty Family
    (Eau Claire, WI)

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  44. Grace,

    Even though I've never met you, you and Andrew have been in my prayers every day since I found your blog via Pyromaniacs. I'm so sorry about your loss, but know Andrew is in the arms of our loving Savior. My wife went through the same experience. Her 1st husband suffered a massive heart attack and left behind my wife and 2 little boys. What's ahead will be painful and lonely but just trust the Lord and He will see you through all of it. He will provide for all your needs. We will continue to pray for you. We are also in Minnesota and have attended your church a few times.

    Paul McAllister

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  45. Grace,
    Thank you for opening your lives to us. We weep with you during this time. Singing songs of worship held a new perspective this morning knowing that Andrew is with God. I know the Lord is encouraging your heart and sustaining your every need, but know that we will continue to pray that your inner man would be strengthened and that your rest would be find in the Great Comforter. Much Love, the McKittericks

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  46. Grace, AJ, and Gracie,
    I had the privilege of being one of Andrew's Sunday School teachers when his family was in Oakland, CA...back in his very young years. Deep down, I just knew that Andrew would be a man for God, and I have always thought of him and prayed for him over the years.
    I have been reading your journal and blogs. Touched my heart deeply....being a loving Proverbs 31 wife to Andrew.
    My love and heart prayers go out to you, AJ and Gracie at this time. I am deeply sorry for your loss. I remember Andrew visiting Oakland church a few years ago and remembered his sweet smile.
    I praise God for the man Andrew has grown to be. I know that he is resting at his Heavenly Father's feet.
    Thought we are miles and miles apart geographically, please know that our love and heart prayers are deep and as close as next door.

    Much love in our Lord Jesus Christ,
    Kathy Gin (CIBC)

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  47. Grace, I wanted to add to those words of all these others to say that Alan and I are also praying for you and your 2 little precious ones. We are rejoicing that Andrew is no longer in pain, and even better, that He is worshipping the Lord in a way he never could before. We are excited at the prospect of meeting him again in the future and that this is merely a pause in a long period of knowing him and learning to love the Lord the way our Savior deserves. I wish that I could be there for the memorial service, but work is preventing me at present, but know that Alan and I will continue to be praying for you. The Lord will be proven as the greatest husband to His bride the Church.

    We love you.

    Alan and Gretchen

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  48. Dear Grace,

    It has been a long time since I've seen or talked to you...your story is truly heartbreaking...and your faith is truly inspiring. May God comfort you and your family.

    Grace and Peace,

    Young Kim

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  49. Grace..
    I am so sorry for your loss. I can't even imagine how you are feeling now. Thank you for allowing us to view some of your most struggling moments in life. What a testimony Andrew and you have been to so many, including me! I praise the Lord he is out of pain and with our heavenly Father. We have nothing to gain on this earth. We must look forward to seeing Him soon and reaching others for Him. I will continue to pray for you and your children as you grieve such an amazing loss.

    In His loving arms,
    Mindy Walker
    Troy, OH

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  50. Grace,
    My heart is heavy for you. I'm so glad Andrew is in the presence of the Lord. A friend told me one time"God is too good to be unkind and too wise to make a mistake" Love you Ruth Kline

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  51. Grace,
    We love you and want you to know that Andrew is still with you always. It is very comforting to know that Andrew is no longer in pain; but rather rejoicing in Christ at the moment.

    To quote Jim & Gail...
    "Precious in the sight of the Lord
    is the death of His godly ones.

    Rejoicing and weeping."

    (Jim and Gail)

    We love you Grace and continually praying for you,

    Erik & Roxanne Greene

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  52. Our prayers are with you and your family at this time. May the Lord comfort you through these times.

    Love,
    Leona and the Ferguson family

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  53. Dear Grace,

    I thank God for both you and Andrew and how you've shared your lives and opened up all your thoughts for us to read. For all the times of heartache and suffering, I only saw hearts that submitted themselves to God, humble, and mold-able, willing to be refined by God. It is by your examples that we are blessed and encouraged.

    Commit your way to the LORD;
    trust in him and he will do this:

    He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun.

    Psalm 37:5-6

    Prayerfully,
    Judy & Richard Lee (CA)

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  54. I was very much encouraged over the last few days as I've been following the blog here.

    From when I first became a believer (back in late 2004) till now, I have never seen a clearer picture nor had a better understanding of what it means to have more than I deserve. I have never seen such humility during adverse circumstances. Grace, I am so humbled by your faith during all these "momentary afflictions". All this time I have found myself wanting in the area of being content when facing adverse circumstances and often lose sight of what Christ had done. So often I become discontent and instead prideful in myself and my own self-pity. Seeing your posts has helped me immensely the last few days.

    I have been praying for you and the kids; although I won't be able to fly out for the memorial service, I really hope someone could record and post a video of it somewhere so that those of us who aren't able to make it could still watch from wherever we are. While I mourn with you, yet I also rejoice that Andrew is now with the Lord, where there is never-ending joy and no more suffering.

    Please let us know if anyone is able to videotape the memorial service. Thanks!

    Praying for you,

    Josh

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  55. I am sorry for your loss. Andrew was a great guy, and he will be missed.

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  56. Grace, we are praying for you, the kids and the rest of the family. We are glad that we could see Andrew in December as well as you and the kids. We rejoice the Andrew is now with our Lord and Savior and without pain and suffering. Tiff and I look forward to when Christ returns or when we are with Andrew, our dads and the rest of the saints in heaven who have gone on before us. May the Word, prayer and believers from the church around you be an encouragement to you. Thinking of you. Andrew, Tiffany and Ethan Ho

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  57. Grace,

    Praise God for sharing your lives with me. I am sorry for your loss. So thankful for you all, and I hope you all will continue to be strengthened, helped, and upheld by God.

    Much love,
    Joe Lee (Chicago)

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  58. I'm hoping that this comment will be a comfort to you. Before Andrew's death, I read about his situation on someone else's blog, and clicked on the link to your blog. I read the latest news about him, and then I noticed the link to Solid Food. I went to the Solid Food website, listened to the first two sermons in the "What is a Biblical Christian" series, and finally (after years of being a false convert) came to a right understanding of repentance and faith. I can now, for the first time ever say, "I am truly saved."

    Your husband's illness and subsequent death were used by God to save me. I hope that knowledge can bring a tiny bit of comfort to you today. I look forward to meeting Andrew in heaven someday. :)

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  59. I'm sorry for your loss. I came across Andrew's story after noticing that a friend had joined a prayer group for him and his family. After reading much of Andrew's story, I found it horrifying what he and his family had to go through. When I saw all of his prayers that went unanswered it made me think that this man had every reason to be mad at God, but he didn't seem to be. Talk about being humble, talk about being tested. In many ways, I see Andrew as one who was forced to sacrifice himself much the way Jesus did. The graphic photograph of the sore on his neck towards the end of his life were hard to take in as it was so degrading; no human being should have to die the way this man did.

    I admire the way Andrew he held himself, maintained his faith and his perspective on his life; I'm not so sure I could have done that. My heart goes out to Andrew, his family and all of his friends.

    Very truly

    Mike R.

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  60. Grace,

    I have been praying for you and thinking about you all the time. I so wish I could have been at the service today - and I would have come, if it weren't for the nine months pregnant situation. I am praying that God will shelter you under His wings, hold you up, be your refuge and comfort. A few weeks ago as I was praying for you and Andrew, I was telling God about how unfair it seems that He would take Andrew home - and all of a sudden I just had this picture in my mind of Andrew, free of pain and suffering, entering heaven into the arms of Jesus, who still bears the scars of suffering, who understood all of Andrew's pain, there to receive him and give him his reward. I know that God loves you tremendously and it is so clear that His hand is on you. much love,

    Rebecca

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