Jennifer was a child of grace. Death intrudes, but grace, like love, abides. To know Jennifer was to know how gracious a person can be. Jennifer possessed a smile that could light up a room. In any group of people, gathered for any purpose, Jennifer would make friends and be counted as a good friend in turn.
Making beautiful music is a gift of grace, and Jennifer shared her amazing talent in spades. I treasure many wonderful memories of Jennifer sitting with her father in this sanctuary blowing the angelic trumpet and making a joyful noise unto the Lord.
Jennifer was very intelligent, but she never used her intellect to intimidate or belittle. Well-educated herself, Jennifer saw the importance of making sure the less fortunate also had access to the grace of a good education.
Jennifer possessed a deep and abiding faith. In the last couple of years, Jennifer questioned her illness and declining health as do we all, but even as the darkness gathered about her, she never allowed the darkness to extinguish the light of her love for God and faith in the life-giving power of Jesus Christ. Even to the end, God’s grace was sufficient for her to bear her affliction without bitterness or recrimination.
God’s grace was extended to Jenny in the gift of two loving and dedicated parents who did everything in their power to find healing for Jenny and help her bear up under the strain of her illness. Vic and Janet, you are great parents, and you have nothing to regret or feel guilty about.
Jenny also loved her brother Brian, and in turn she knew he loved her. Brian, you are a good brother and Jenny will continue to watch over you.
Friendship is a grace, and Jenny was always thankful for her friends who shared her life. Grace was also extended to Jenny by her employer who kept her on the payroll, including her expensive health care, even when she could not be as productive as she hoped. Thank you for this gracious act.
It is natural for us to ask where God has been in these days. I suppose God is still where He was when people heard Jesus preach and yet turned away. Where God was when His Son was arrested and flogged. Where God was when His only child was nailed to a cross, left to die alone, and then hurriedly buried in a borrowed tomb.
God will not remain silent forever.
God will act, and will bring us to life again as he raised Jesus from the dead. Perhaps this is the ultimate grace - that we will live again, and be with God and Jenny again forever. Yes, we grieve. Of course, our hearts break, but even in our mourning we celebrate the life who was Jenny. God’s grace is the hope we carry that even as we stand at her grace and ask, "Will we see her again?" the answer is a resounding "yes".
God gives us the grace of life for which we are thankful.
God gives us the grace to bear our hardship so that we are not crushed or embittered.
God gives us the grace of a hope that survives all that would destroy us, even cancer, even death.
God gives us the grace of angels like Jenny who prove to us that although love makes us vulnerable and open to pain, the abiding glory of that love abides.
Nothing, not even death, can separate us from God’s love.