This week I learned about the unexpected death of a young mother due to complications in pregnancy. Kylee was the wife of a former CCF intern. Matt had interned under Mike Waers before I was even a student at CCF but I had met him and Kylee a few times at statewide CCF retreats. From what I knew of both of them, they were both amazing people of God. They worked with a large missions organization and had 3 children. Kylee was pregnant with their 4th. An emergency led to a stat delivery of the baby on Wednesday. Kylee died from complications a few hours after giving birth to a baby boy.
Although I barely knew Kylee, her death has really rocked me. The thought of her not watching her babies grow or being by her husband’s side makes me ache for her and for Matt. I’ve thought so much about her, her husband and the kids over the last few days. A beautiful page of memories and thoughts of her has been posted on Facebook. Every time I read a comment, some from family, her closest friends or people who didn’t even know her, I am moved by their words. She has left a legacy.
What’s really neat is that, it appears Kylee was somehow ready for this day. While many of us fear death, she embraced it, knowing that this world is not our home if we profess faith in Jesus Christ, and that there is a better place prepared for us. She wrote about it on her blog: Her words seem especially poignant, given her untimely death. But, ultimately, God knew the number of her days on this earth. He is not surprised by her death.
Learning of her death really made me think about what life would be like with Michael or if I couldn’t watch Michael Paul grow up. It’s been hard to see God’s wisdom in the whole experience. It’s been hard not to ask him, “Why?” On Thursday after learning about this, I put the computer down, turned off the TV and snuggled my son. I told him I loved him 100 extra times. I prayed and thanked God for my husband and son and asked Him not to let us take each other for granted. It shouldn’t take a tragedy to make us cherish the ones we love more or to make us more eager to serve God radically with what little time we have.
Today, while so many have sorrow and hurt in their hearts because of Kylee’s death, they can rest assured she is rejoicing, sitting below the throne of God singing “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God almighty.” One of my favorite songs is “Beautiful” by Phil Wickham. Every time I sing these lyrics, I practically sob at the thought of one day experiencing this:
When we arrive at eternity’s shore,
where death is just a mystery and tears are no more.
We’ll enter in as the wedding bells ring,
Your bride will come together and we’ll sing, “You’re Beautiful.”