We are the Champions

Welcome to our blog...we hope our journey of faith encourages yours.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Emily's Quilt

Emily finished her first quilt. She started it as a project to do with Chris, however he was never able to really help her. She finally finished it to take with her to college.

Sequoia Park

Dan, Nisha and I took a day trip up to see the giant Sequoia Trees. It was a fun day, driving the BMW up the curvy road and enjoying the wonderful smell of the forest. I have attached a couple pictures of Dan and Nisha. It was such a delight to spend the day with them.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

A word from Chris

I found this word from Chris in his wallet and thought it would encourage.

"I believe God has a purpose for me. I believe He takes all things and uses them for Hs purposes. He sent His son to takes man's punishment so one day we can be with Him. He is omnipotent, omnipresent and omniscient. He never fails.

Purpose is important to me. The sanctity of life. Having something to value above myself. Having something greater than myself to be a part of. It is important to me to have something I'd give my life for." ~ Chris Champion

So very hard

This will probably not be very encouraging, but I guess it will be honest. It is so very hard, living itself it such a struggle. To wake up is to wake up into the "darkness" of life right now. It truly is something I think is impossible to understand unless you have walked in it. The loss of someone you love, but not just one person but two of the most important people of your life.

I am realizing that I have never been able to properly grieve the loss of my precious John, and now to add to that the loss of my dear and sweet Chris, well it is hard to even put into words. Tears are a constant companion.

Last week we went with Dan, Nisha, Myself, Mihaela, Emily and a couple of Chris's closest friends to spread some of his ashes in a special place he and Emily had. It was beautiful to do, Nisha and Dan sang the song they wrote for Chris's celebration of life, and it was even more meaningful there.

I miss my "family" so much, my role as a wife and mother, my purpose. I know someday it will be better. I know I will find a new purpose, I truly just want my life to glorify the Lord. I do find joy in seeing how John's and Chris's life have made a difference in others. Sometime I think I can almost feel their presence around me, but it always so fleeting.

Dan and Nisha are still here, probably leaving on Friday. They are such a delight to me. I have enjoyed them so much. They are taking a trip to Chicago to take care of some business the beginning of Sept. They have invited me to come - I think I might.

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Celebration of Chris's Life

There will be a celebration of Chris's life next Saturday. The details are below. As hard as it is, I remember how much Chris enjoyed when we celebrated his fathers life. Chris said that all he could do was smile seeing how many people loved and admired his dad. It gave Chris great joy. I pray for the same celebration in the midst of the sorrow. All are welcome of course, there will be time to share if you desire to.

Chris Champion Memorial
Saturday, August 15th, 2009 2pm
The Oaks Community Church
10200 Campus Park Drive
Bakersfield, Ca 93311

In Lieu of Flowers please send donations to:

The Way Fellowship
Chris Champion Memorial
Missions Fund
PO Box 10717
Bakersfield, Ca 93389

Friday, August 07, 2009

What Happens When I Don't Pay Attention in Church.

This is a blog Chris wrote in November of 2007. I wanted to share it again, it speaks of what he believed and his heart during the storm.

So, today I went to church...
And, after the pastor said one thing during announcements, my mind was off on a tangent the rest of the morning. (As it is now... I'm forcing myself to pay enough attention to write this).
Oh. Text message.
And another...
Okay, so the pastor was talking about a prayer event that the church had earlier in the week. During it, it came out that one of the men in the group had cancer. So, they started praying for him.
And I started to wonder... if given the opportunity, what would I say to him?
And that was where my thoughts wandered for the rest of the morning. The pastor was talking about stuff in Acts 11... I remember bits and pieces of it, but I really don't feel guilty about that at all.
The first thing that I thought I would say to this man is that God has a plan for everything. Throughout the last year, that is one of the greatest things God taught me - sometimes, he chooses to use things like that to have a profound impact on those around us. There is no way that, without such a high-profile struggle, the people around me could have seen God's provision for me and my family and the strength that He gives us. I had countless opportunities to tell people that I wasn't doing anything special - that God was helping me keep things together. That God was the reason I didn't become depressed, or a total basket case. That God was the reason I am still alive.
And that was even echoed in the people around me. My whole family's struggle through things has done wonders to unite our church - given people opportunities to be the body of Christ - to do his work by showing his love and compassion. To pray for each other and support each other. It truly did intensify the sense of family with our church.
If everything in life stayed nice and perfect, there would be no need for God to support us. We wouldn't need him to lend us His strength. We wouldn't need His provision for us. We wouldn't need His mercy. In essence, we wouldn't feel any need for Him. Likewise, we wouldn't need the prayer and support of the people around us. They would have no opportunity to come together without any reason to. Without struggle, there would be no opportunity to build our faith and character in Christ and no opportunity to unite as a family.
I remember... a long while back... praying that God use me however He wanted to. I meant it too - whatever the cost, whatever I need to do - that He would give me every chance he could to do His work.
In hindsight, I'm thinking that probably wasn't the greatest idea.
I often wonder if this last year was a direct result of that prayer. God is up there, "Well, you asked for it." When I said that prayer, I didn't think about any possible permanent damage. Maybe being a bit embarrassed, messing up a bit, making a fool of myself, or whatever. But losing some physical abilities... never thought about it.
Although, I suppose the use of the word "permanent" in that last paragraph was fairly silly. There was only one real permanent effect of all this: the people whose lives were permanently changes. The people who might - just might - have seen a glimpse of God and His glory. The people who could have come to understand who Christ is, grown closer to him, or might have just had their heart softened just a little bit. That is permanent. Losing some function of a limb - who cares?
So, if you ever feel tempted to say that prayer - asking God to do whatever he can with your life - I'd suggest you rethink it. Do you really mean it?
What do you think you could lose? A bit of reputation? Some time? Some money?
What about having to leave everything you know? What about losing all security in life? What about losing your life?
So, before you go to God and say something like that, I really challenge you to think: do you mean it? Are you just saying that because it sounds good, or do you really mean it? Are you just being lukewarm, or do you honestly mean that you are ready to give up your life for whatever purpose God has for it?
I remember one of my first prayers after being diagnosed: "God, you better have some huge plans for this. Otherwise, I'm going to be pissed." I suppose he didn't give me any reason to be angry. The effect I've already had on people's lives is enough to make me honestly say that I would do it again, if given the choice. And I can't wait to see what else God has for me and my testimony.
I do mean that prayer. Every word of it. I hope you do too. After all, this life is only temporary.
Oh yea. I need to study physics. Exam tomorrow. Probably not so bright to be writing such a huge blog post right now. Eh. Who cares.
Look - another text message.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

See you soon my precious Chris

Yesterday my dear and precious Chris left this world and graduated into heaven. I know he was greeted by his Lord Jesus and his father. But already it is as if there is a huge hole left where he was in my heart here and now. I can not wait until heaven, to be joined with John and Chris, and eventually our whole family and friends together. The depth of the loss is almost unbearable, Chris is such a light - no matter how bad he felt he would be so gracious, always thanking everyone who helped him. Each morning as I made him breakfast he always complimented me. Why he had to leave so young, I may never know, but I do know that somehow God will use it for His glory. That was Chris's hearts desire that if nothing else this would be used to glorify the Lord. As the word went out friends gathered to say "goodbye" to Chris. It was so special, with times of prayer and worship. I know Chris was pleased.

The last 3 months Chris was lovingly cared for by such devoted friends, who ensured that he was always comfortable, entertained, and especially loved on. I can not begin to thank enough those who walked this journey with Chris. It is strange this morning the quiet of the house.

Chris leaves behind his precious Emily, whom he loved with a passion and depth of someone far older than himself. I know his greatest sadness was not seeing the life they dreamed of fulfilled. They had made such wonderful plans for the future. But somehow God will restore these lost dreams in eternity.

I pray that God will give us strength as a family to bear this heartbreak. It seems like so much lose in such a short time, but I must trust God to be my families rock, to be able to rest in His arms until we can feel strong again.