I recently stayed with Will and Angie for about a week and a half. I will cherish that time forever. Even amidst the sadness and uncertainty, there is hope and joy. Being away from them now, I realized something else – how much I dearly love reading updates to see what is happening, as I know so many of you are as well.
As was stated in the most recent blog, Will has been resting much. Upon exiting the hospital, a new team took charge to labor on Will’s behalf. A team of Angie, his friends, his family, Angie’s family, and of all of us who continue to hope and fight and pray for Will.
We continue to fight for and with Will but it is indeed a tricky balance between hope and healing and the reality of the situation at hand.
Some people have given up hope for Will’s life on earth, expecting the doctors’ timeline for his life to run its course. Others are assuming God must and will heal him. There is probably a balance in there somewhere and it’s hard to know. We don’t know the outcome but we want to do everything we know to do while continually relying and trusting in the Lord.
But even in moments of anguish, Will continues to do what he loves to do best – he’s bringing people together and he’s creating. Someone said it best in one of the blog comments recently, that we shouldn’t miss the miracle of all of us being brought together because of one man’s suffering. Will has always wanted to bring people together for good – and he is doing that now more than ever. Will has never cared what someone looks like, what someone believes in, or anything like that, he simply loves and cares for each person he meets along his journey. And he and Angie are oh so good at loving and caring for people on their journey. And secondly, to create, Will is still finding ways to create amidst his resting… When many of his friends were in town, what did he say? He said, “Let’s create and build something.” Someone echoed, “A tower!” With a smile on his face, Will responds, “We know how that worked out (Tower of Babel). We’ll do ours differently.”
Each moment with Will is cherished and his joy and sense of humor is as sharp as ever.
While sitting with a group of friends, he said, “I’m gonna have to take some medicine and its gonna have to go through my stomach, so deal with it.”
His friend Reva told him she was going to dip his hand in some cold water while he was asleep. He let her know it wouldn’t matter. “I’ll probably pee my pants anyways while I’m sleeping.”
Another time as he was joking about himself and he said, “I wasn’t going to tell anybody. It was a deathbed confession.” Blanks stares across the room. ….”I can make that joke, haha”
He might not be awake a lot. But Will is still here. And he’s doing what he loves. Creating and bringing people together even though he cannot see it.
I locked eyes with Will the other day and he hung his head softly and said, “It’s hard man.”………… “I hate this, ya know.” My sister Kelli said to Will, “We’re not giving up on you.” And he responded, “I don’t want to give up….. I just don’t know how (to keep fighting).”
Nobody knows what God has planned. Is Will like Job and will be restored 100 fold? Is he like Paul and must carry on with a thorn in his flesh? Or is he like a Stephen, a young godly man, taken too soon in the eyes of those close to him but in the perfect fulfillment of God’s plan for him on earth?
I want to be confused or get angry. I want to ask a thousand times “Why Will?” But at the same time, I see that “only Will.” Of those I know, only Will could suffer so patiently. Only Will could create and bring so many people together while resting. And as Angie mentioned one evening, as the months go by God’s ripple reaches out further and further. More people are being touched, inspired, and impacted by their story. A story in despair. But a story drenched with hope. And full of love. I want to wish it was anyone but Will. I want to wish it were me. But I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t suffer so graciously. But maybe one day, if I too have to, I will be able to because of the example he has been to me.
When asked recently, “(Will), what are you praying?” He responded by saying, “I’m just praying that God would continue to hold on to me.”
And God, we pray that as well. Might you hold on to Will as he rests. And may You continue to bring people together because of the life Will has lived and is living so well.