I’ll fly home today to officiate my little brother’s memorial service. No one ever has a contingency plan for something like this. This may be the hardest thing I’ve ever done after about 18 months of very difficult season after difficult season. Instead of asking what should others be learning from all this I ask, instead as a spiritual leader in my life suggested, “What is God doing in me in this season? What am I supposed to learn in all this? What is God teaching me?”

Instead of asking “Where did Tyler go wrong?” Or “how did we fail him?” Or “what more could I have done?” Or “What signs did I miss?” I ask instead “Where can I walk more in God’s grace?” & “Where am I not leaning wholly on Him for my sustenance?” & “Where is my character not reflective of His incomparable love?” “Where am I not speaking life?” & “Who do I need to forgive and thus live free from the bounds of bitterness and the poison of unforgiveness?”

I also contemplate the people God has put in my life who can call me to a higher level. The people He has surrounded me with make me better. I have an amazing wife and amazing kids. I don’t deserve them, they’re too good for me. They make me want to be better. My extended family loves me greatly and they believe in me more than I believe in myself. He has sent mentors and coaches who have national and international platforms yet their wisdom is available at the tips of my fingers and on the other end of a phone call. He put me in a spiritual family who owes me nothing but has been ridiculously generous. He allowed me to be a part of planting a church with my brochacho and friend who I now call pastor. I’m blessed with friends around the country who are praying for me and sending me words of encouragement and calling me. Many of whom immediately called or texted me upon hearing the news.

When I stand and eulogize Tyler, I shall not stand alone. They all stand with me. But more so God stands with me and is working in me in this process. I’ll be a better follower, husband, dad, brother, son, pastor, and leader having gone through this.

I appreciate all the outpouring of love you have all given us and the offers for help and prayers. You give me hope that people can really make a difference. I am humbled to know each of you. I couldn’t do this without you.

Tyler you made us all better. This didn’t go the way anyone planned it but God is working to His glory. Your pain can be our platform now. Your mess can be our message. Your life wasn’t wasted. It is not over. You still teach us today. We will not forget. We will bear someone else’s pain. We will reach out to someone else and encourage them. We will believe in someone who just needs a cheerleader in their corner. We will lend a hand to the down and out. In the little things we will remember you and try to leave things a little better than we found them.

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