one year ago today, my life was altered. the man who has impacted my life the most, other than my dad, went home to be with the Lord. and it's still interesting to me that he had that much of an impact on my life when i only spent six weeks with him.
Johnson truly taught me so much about sacrifice and what leaving a legacy can look like. this man was in line to become a Bishop in India. a Bishop in India is a rather large deal...but he gave this up to start the orphanage where i have spent the last two summers. he started off the orphanage on a dirt floor under a thatched roof with just a few kids who were in need. he shared multiple times that snakes fell from ceiling and all kinds of heart wrenching stories that involved kids that came to live with him and his wife as this newly founded children's home.
but Johnson shared more than his stories with me. Johnson shared his heart. Johnson shared his heart with me by the stories he shared, the jokes he cracked, the way he protected me from the lizards and other various insects, through his example of studying the Word every morning, through him singing different hymns, the way he loved the children at the orphanage, through his willingness to laugh with me, and by the way he loved me.
it still absolutely breaks my heart to know that Johnson, my beloved Thattha, is no longer here on the earth. it breaks my heart to know that he won't be at my wedding, and it breaks my heart that he isn't there with the children every day.
but i continue to be thankful for the impact Johnson had on my life and so many others throughout the course of his lifetime. Johnson allowed the Lord to take him as an ordinary man and mold him into an extraordinary man who lived a life of sacrifice, obedience, faithfulness, patience, gentleness, and love.
what an example.
what a privilege to have known him.
what a blessing it will be to be able to tell my children stories about him someday.
what an honor to have been impacted by him.
and what a joyful reunification it will be when we are walking on the streets of gold together, laughing at his jokes as his belly jiggles, sipping on indian coffee while eating biscuits, and worshipping our Lord and Savior.
and i say that, because i, too, have faith that he and i will meet again.