Yesterday I drove to Middlesboro, KY to attend the funeral of my second cousin on my mother's side of the family. Billie Jo was much more than a second cousin.  She and her sister, Judy, were our sanctity when our family would make vacation visits from Detroit. As a young boy I enjoyed our side trips to Middlesboro.  It always meant spending time with Billie Jo and Judy.  They were fun, full of life, and always enjoyed a good trip to the lake for some water skiing.

Billie Jo, with her deep voice, kept us mesmerized with one story after another.  Stories that often ended with a round of laughter.  Her stories never got old and her presence always brought life to the room.  It is no wonder that Micah 6:8 was mentioned as one of her favorite verses ".... and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?"  There is no doubt she understood and lived that verse.

Her funeral was a time of great memories.  We sat around and talked about family members, many, if not most who have gone on to be with the Lord. The funeral was also a time of meeting new family members, some of which I had never met.  I especially enjoyed meeting Collier, a young 16 - year man who loves to play baseball.   I have no doubt the future Braves will have a spot for him--if not it will be their loss!

I guess I am trying to say, that no matter how difficult funerals may be they are a great time of remembering the past and reflecting on the future.  Thank you, Billie Jo, for giving us a wonderful past to remember and investing in a bright future we can believe in.  Your strong faith has given us a good, positive, and valuable model to follow.  

Thank you for allowing me to be so personal and to share a part of my story.  

This is my story...