Amy and I have been best friends for 15 years, and I can honestly say that we have seen the best times of each other's lives, and also some of the toughest and most devastating times.
Recently some events in Amy's life left her feeling very overwhelmed, and as a best friend sometimes being there really is the best thing you can do for the person you have shared most of your life with thus far as a friend. I couldn't turn down the opportunity, with the help of some very giving family members, to visit and be a part of a very special birthday for miss Madison Rose Pepper. She is Amy and John's first little bundle of joy, and she is nothing less than a sparkle right down deep in the core of everyone's eye. How could you not love a little ladybug as precious and full of life as her? That's how I feel about her anyway, and she isn't even my own.
Amy has always been the type of lady that when she puts together a celebration, she knows how to bring the spread and has just the right touch for all the decorations that make it look so special and so welcoming. Madison's little ladybug birthday party was just that, as special as the guest of honor herself.
It has been a trying couple of months for Amy, John, her dad and the rest of their family involved in the process of praying and supporting two of the strongest men in their family to my knowledge. At about the same time, both John and Amy's dad found out that they had early stages of two very different kinds of cancer. We both spent time talking about the unknown, and sometimes just how downright scary it can be, trust me I said, I know. Having lost someone to cancer in the past, I know that exact feeling. Where you want to be able to do something to change the outcome so that it is how you want it to be, but in the end you just know that here is only One person in control of every situation, yet He hears the prayers of everyone who calls on His name for help and comfort.
And to Amy's relief, and all the rest of her family, both John and her dad Randy are cancer free at this point.
God IS good, all the time. Even if the outcome would have been different, He is still God and I know He still loves us. But we are especially grateful for this outcome, and we were able to all share together in relief with joy and thanksgiving the little precious life that Amy and John have been given in Madison. Here are just a couple of my favorites of her from the weekend.