This is part 3 in a series of blog posts surrounding the loss of Layla Grace.
A small piece of Layla will be forever in our hearts. She is more than just a passing sympathy or a news story. She’s changed many of us, and some of us profoundly. But we know what the coming days hold. There is laundry to fold, soccer schedules to keep, jobs to do, and demands to face. If we’re not intentional, the lessons we’ve learned from Layla could easily become faded or lost in the clamor of noise and demands that will bombard us in the coming days.
Or…we could make some real changes. We could actually reprioritize our life. We could turn off the TV and eat a meal with our family. We could say NO to some of the demands on our schedule and tend to our relationship with God. I so pray that you do.
As a pastor, I watch a lot of people in their spiritual journey. Can I make a few suggestions on what you might find helpful in your relationship with Christ”
1. Find some other Christians and make it a priority in your life. Maybe it’s a local church, or a neighborhood Bible Study, or a group of parents who get together to pray. Make sure that they believe and follow the Bible, and that they sincerely love God. Then take a chance and open up to them. One of the most dangerous things in faith is when we try to go it alone. Find a friend and a faith community that can support you in that journey. If you’ve never been baptized, talk to them about what that might mean for your life.
2. Learn and grow. Immerse yourself in the things of God. Read the Bible. Go to a local Christian bookstore and ask them to recommend a book for you to read. Talk to other Christians about the faith questions or struggles you might have. If you still have questions and struggles dealing with Layla and her death, I’d encourage you to sign up for my blog. In coming weeks I’ll be dealing with more questions and comments that I hear from you. I pray you’ll find them helpful. Later on, I’ll address a wide variety of faith topics that I hope will be an encouragement.
3. Pray. Just talk with God. Tell him good morning when you wake up. Share your joys and burdens with him when you go to bed. Pound on his chest when you’re angry or don’t understand (He’s big, he can take it.) Learn what it means to be in a relationship with him.
Thank you for taking the time to read all this. From the bottom of my heart I pray that you have found it helpful. Just like you, God drew me into the Layla story in a way that I can’t explain. My church, LifeBridge, in Cypress TX is a brand new mission church that is just getting started. 6 months ago I had never even met the Marsh family. Then, we decided to sponsor a benefit for Layla Grace to help with the medical expenses her family faced. Ryan and I hit it off, we had breakfast at Denny’s a couple times, and before I knew it I was right in the middle of all this. Turns out God had a plan – a plan to share his love with you through sweet little Layla Grace. Thank you for trusting me with this time.
Pastor Michael Meissner
LifeBridge Church, Cypress TX