Confession: I have been rocked by tragedies recently, although mostly peripheral to me. I don’t know if my heart is just more sensitive today, or maybe it’s God trying to show me something…
I have been gutted by multiple instances of overnight fires, claiming multiple lives. Even here in town. I shared on my Facebook feed a news article as a prayer request in one incident because it felt horribly close to home, and my husband knew the couple involved.
But my phone wasn’t done blowing up with these types of notifications, as last week on Tuesday many of my blogger friends expressed grief that a fire took the lives of a mom, dad, and two children during the night. In sadness, I said a quick prayer for people involved but it didn’t really register at that moment.
Mandy Kelly was a wonderful Christian blogger at Worshipful Living, where she created a lot of brilliant resources for Moms/Homeschoolers/God-fearing women like me… One of these being the Good Morning Girls ministry, where she was the Leadership Coordinator.
I cannot even begin to share how the Good Morning Girls Facebook page influenced my life; I followed along their Bible studies, I was encouraged to dive into my Bible (even through seasons where I didn’t really feel spiritual), and I often used these studies in fellowship with other mom friends when we felt a little too busy or disconnected.
When I realized it was “that Mandy”, my heart sunk. Even though I didn’t know her personally, she was who “I wanted to be when I grow up”. I think every Christian mom-blogger does this chore of Pinterest and social media promotion with the hopes that they’ll be able to use their voice and influence others the way Mandy did. I dream of having this humble beginning of a blog become a solace for all these godly warriors who are fiercely on the front lines of God’s Kingdom over their households.
As I prepare to participate in a link-up to honor Mandy, I have to think about ONE THING she taught me and I’m at a total loss for what to say. She taught me to read and highlight in my Bible, and how to do the SOAP method. She taught me that I can rekindle the joy in my homeschooling, and that having the faith of a harlot can be a remarkable thing.
But I think the main lesson I can walk away with is to finish well.
Her life and ministry was an example of how it doesn’t matter how you start as long as you do, and nothing on this earth is fatal or final; until you are before the very presence of God – where Mandy and her family found themselves last Wednesday morning – you can always be used by God. You are never out of grace. You are never beyond hope. So finish this race, and finish well.
Even though it came as a surprise, I know she was welcomed into eternity as she heard Jesus say, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.” Because in her earnest desire to finish well, that phrase describes who she was and what she inspired others to be.
Mandy’s church has opened a fund to help raise donations for the family. You can make donations here. When you visit the website, click on the green “Give” button and designate your donation for The Kelly Family. The funeral for Scott, Mandy, Lizzie and Judah Kelly will be at 1 p.m. on Monday, March 27, 2017, at her church. Visitation will be held before the service from 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. I ask that you please hold the surviving two children and extended family in prayers during the service (for Alaskan reference, this would be between 6:30am – 10:30am our time).
This post will be a part of a link up of other bloggers choosing to honor Mandy, which goes live on March 29th. I encourage you to read more from other bloggers at that time. And I can only pray that should I pass on to eternity unexpectedly, I would have made my mark on this world like Mandy did.
What are some ways you hope to finish well? How can I encourage you and pray with you through this?