On January 14th, I was coming home from a meeting I’d had in LA. Since I hate LA freeways, my husband had driven me down there, and we had kind of turned it into a date night. My daughters were hanging out at home, having a sister day.
As we started down the freeway, I decided to message someone about something we had decided at the meeting. I got on Facebook, messaged her, then was scrolling down my home feed when I saw a Missing Child Alert for my own two year old nephew, Noah. He had been lost in the woods of Tennessee.
I started screaming, “Noah’s missing, Noah’s missing!”
I called my parents, hysterical. Due to the extreme chaos of the situation, no one in our California family had even been alerted. The next hour as we raced home was devastating and surreal, but it was nothing compared to the next week of our life.
Noah never made it out of the woods. After a week of searching and praying, his body was found. Our sweet little nephew had found a hidden place to lay down and he died of hypothermia.
I want to share more of Noah’s story, but I am not ready to do that now, as I’m still processing all of it. Our lives are forever changed, and we’re still grieving. I think we always will be. There is so much more to say about all of this, and someday I will.
But for now, I just wanted to share the basic facts with you, because I know that some of my blog readers only read my blog via email and don’t have Facebook, so some of you don’t even know this happened.
I’ve been putting off writing this post, but there’s no way I could go back to posting regular blog posts without addressing this.
You can read a lot of the story on my Facebook page, I was posting as everything was happening while we were searching in TN. I also started a new page, In Memory of Noah, to keep his memory alive and to give God glory for his life.
Like I said, there’s so much to say about all of this. But what matters most is that this little baby’s short life was used mightily by God. Noah’s story touched people all over the world. Over a thousand people came out to search for him. Thousands around the world prayed and sent messages and letters and cards.
Hundreds shared stories of growing in their faith as they prayed for Noah, some praying for the first time ever, some even putting their faith in Jesus and receiving salvation.
You can watch Noah’s beautiful memorial service, viewed by over 100,000 people, here. I am still blown away by the strength God gave his parents as they shared at the service.
Soon, I’ll be going back to posting regular old blog posts, but know that I am praying about how best to honor Noah’s story, and when I am ready to share that with you, I will.
For now, I may not be able to answer all of the questions you may have. I hope you can understand. First of all, we are still grieving and it’s hard. Secondly, there is a LOT of misinformation out there, including some very ugly rumors, and I can’t possibly address them all.
If you want more information, you can read most of the story at the Jackson Sun. They seemed to be reporting correctly as far as I remember.
To those who have sent messages of love, prayers, and kind words, thank you so much. God has blessed us with comfort through the love of others, and we will always be thankful for that.
Please take a moment today to pray for Noah’s parents and his big sister, and give your little ones an extra hug.