This morning as I sit here reflecting back over the past few days.... I am in complete awe once again.
Dennis passed away on Wednesday night. So, on Friday morning... my mother and I headed down to Boerne, Texas. Immediately upon walking into their house... it was clear... he was truly a major figure in their community. Not only Dennis... but his wife Cathy, Dennis Ray Jr., Robert and Sarah as well. Why major figures? Because they poured into their community a love that can only come from Him.
After we spent some initial time with them... we went next door to where we were to be staying to freshen up. I must confess... after hearing that the six of us plus Uncle Joe and Aunt Paula were all going to be staying there... I was a little curious to meet this family and to see their house. Ellen greeted us at the door and opened up a serene retreat. We were to make ourselves comfortable..... eat their food, swim in their pool, relax in the hot tub, play with the dogs, read on the porches....... Why? They considered themselves blessed to have them for neighbors.
Friday night, as strange as this may sound.... we went to the high school football game. The team was a huge part of their lives. In fact, I cannot begin to share the countless stories I was told by members of the team about my cousin Dennis. The players all had his initials (DS) on the backs of their helmets. Robert did not play but lead the team out onto the field. Robert, Dennis Ray Jr., and Cathy were on the sidelines of the game the whole time. Player upon player coming up to them and hugging them. There was a moment of silence in memory of him. The game was dedicated to him. The team won after a nail biting game. They had already won before the game started... Cousin Dennis loved each one of the boys as if they were his own. Some do not have earthly fathers who claim them. He provided them with unconditional love and support as only possible through Him.
Throughout the moments of each day... there were members of their church there... bringing food, answering the phone, doing whatever needed to be done around the house... taking out the enormous amounts of trash that kept collecting... Funny thing is... I did not know a single stranger for there were none. Conversation after conversation... hug after hug... it was clear... when the church body is what it is meant to be... we are one in the bond of love.
More to come....... My cousin Dennis cannot compare to Him. Christ is truly the Famous One.
2 days ago