Even here, it is well (Tribute to Cindy Lauper Wakio)

I never thought I’d have to write a post like this. Yes, I know death exists but never did I think I would have to write a tribute in honor of… or plan a funeral for someone so dear to me…or face the reality that she’s no longer here with us. Here, I’d mentioned how terrifying the thought was to have someone I know wheeled into a hospital I’d work at. How about one of my close friends dying? As C.S.Lewis says in his book A Grief Observed “Her absence is like the sky, spread over everything.”

The evening I received the news is still such a blur to me. From moments of hope for a miracle of resurrection. My faith wasn’t as small as a mustard seed any more. I vehemently prayed, “God, I know you can create red blood cells in seconds, deliver oxygen…your life-giving breath…anything… please just have her wake up… for your glory to be seen and for people to believe. Tell me she’s just asleep Lord!” To moments of deep grief as I started calling friends; being the bearer of bad news that I didn’t even want to believe in. Receiving their questions while I was yet processing it all. Trying to be a comforting voice to them, while drowning in my own sorrows.

The first person I told was my mother.

“Mum, Cindy Wakio has passed away.”

And at that moment I burst out into tears. My deep groans drowned the echoing of those words in my head. That was good, because I was in utter shock and disbelief. Didn’t I just talk to her the other day? Not Cindinyo.. No, no, no!

“We were promised sufferings. They were part of the program. We were even told, ‘Blessed are they that mourn,’ and I accept it. I’ve got nothing that I hadn’t bargained for. Of course it is different when the thing happens to oneself, not to others, and in reality, not imagination.” C.S. Lewis

But with each number I dialed, it became more real. Distance didn’t help either and I bet I pestered those in Nairobi, calling after every few minutes to find out if anything had happened. I barely slept. Early the next morning, I took a walk on the beach, asking God many questions. I uttered His promises that seemed so dim in light of what had happened.

Sunrise.

As sure as the dawn is your love for us.

Wave upon wave.

He stilled the storm to a whisper; the waves of the sea were hushed.

Where was He when she was ailing? Was He really aware of how this would affect so many people?  Did He know how many plans we had together?

Yet two things continually resounded in my mind, amidst the prayers and tears.

One, the sovereignty of God.

Second, the assurance that she is with Christ since she was a believer.

“Oh the depths of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God!

How unsearchable his judgements, how untraceable His paths.

Who knows the mind of our God? Or who can bring counsel to Him?

Who has ever given to God that God should repay?

For from Him, through Him and to Him is everything.

To God be the glory forever and ever.”

Romans 11:33-36 (NIV)

 

Hadn’t Cindy lived her life in anticipation of being with her Saviour one day? Wasn’t her absence in the body a surety of her now presence with God? In fact I should be elated for her.

“Yaani Cindinyo you got to see Him before me! Anakaa aje? (How does He look?) Nibookie space kwa mansion! (Please book a space for me in the mansion)

Losing our loved ones doesn’t happen to us so that we are punished or so that somehow we can now live out our purposes because we are scared that we too may go any time soon. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. Our individual call and purposes were set out before the beginning of time. This death did not take God by surprise. In fact, it sounds almost crazy to say, but He saw it coming. And He didn’t stop it. For a reason. A good one.


Thank you God for you are sovereign and you are good. All the time, you are good. Time will not heal my pain of losing my beloved friend, but you will. Thank you that each time I remember her, it serves as a reminder to me that this world is not home. That I should fix my eyes on the eternal prize. For to live is Christ and to die is gain. Even here, it is well.


Here is a song tribute I did with some friends of mine from BSF(Bible Study Fellowship) for Cindy and those who lost their loved ones in the FlySax plane accident. ( I would love it if you shared it with others, that they too may choose to trust and praise God even when they don’t understand what’s going on around them.)


Lastly, there’s a new segment on this website called Taste and See that I am unveiling soon. It is greatly inspired by and dedicated to Cindy. Read how and why here

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