Monday, September 2, 2013

A Letter to Isaiah

Lori's Daughter Luci enjoying her book:)
Christina had many wonderful friends.  One of those friends, Lori Lester-Brown, sent a letter to Isaiah along with a book The Jesus Storybook Bible: Every Story Whispers His Name.  I have asked Lori's permission to share her letter because it describes Christina and her life in such a full and refreshing way.  This letter is a treasure to my heart and I am sure it will be held close by Isaiah as he grows and can understand the beauty of his mom's life.  Thank you, Lori, for taking the time to invest in Isaiah.

Dear Isaiah,

I am sure that you have a lot of great books already but I wanted to send you one more.  Someone gave me this book for my daughter and I started reading it to her before she was born and as I did I thought about your mom.

I met your mom during college when  we were both studying the human body (How God made it, how it works, and how we could have jobs to help people's bodies work well).  Then we got to share a bedroom for a few weeks before taking a trip to a country called Guatemala where we worked with little children who needed some love.  After that we got to spend a year together living and working in a dorm with younger students as Resident Assistants (RA's).  During this time I realized that you mom is pretty amazing for a number of reasons:

     1)  She loves people deeply and well. She listens to them and holds them and cares about how their bodies and their hearts are feeling.  She showed this in college by the way she took care of the girls who lived with her when she was an RA, and in how she chose to use her skills as a massage therapist to bless people who were hurting and in how much she loves you and your dad.

Christina with Isaiah in his first big boy bath.
     2)  She is full of life.  You probably already know that she has a huge smile that is hard not to catch.  She also loves adventure and sometimes she does things that people think are silly because they are fun and they let her experience things more fully (like having a fun wrestling match on the lawn of a convent in Guatemala or climbing into the bathtub with her clothes on for your first bath).

     3)  She is faithful.  Your mom has been blessed with an amazing family, lots of good friends, may fun adventures and also some really hard times.  In all of these things she has walked with God, thanking Him and trusting Him along the way.  I think sometimes that was easy to do and sometimes that was a struggle but she held on and in the process got to know God better and feel His love more deeply.

There are a lot of other things I love about your mom but I know that there are a lot of amazing people in your life who will tell you more about her as you grow up.  I want to tell you why this book reminded me of her.

Sometimes when people make Bibles for children they use the stories in it to try to teach them manners or simple lessons:  like "Be nice to your friends" or "Listen to your dad".  I do think that Jesus wants us to care for people and listen to our parents but there is something way more exciting in the Bible for kids and adults too.  

The Bible is a story about God's love for people and about the amazing adventure He has been on with His people since he first created them.  Since the beginning of time He has wanted us to get to know Him and trust Him and be close to Him but people walked away from Him and into a world that has sadness and hurt.  God didn't want us to live apart from Him and hurting forever so He put in motion a Super Rescue Plan so that people could be with Him again.  This book tells the story and it is a story your mom knows really well.  She knows that God wanted to know her and save her with the Super Rescue Plan and she said "Yes!" so even in the hard times she has known the Adventurous Life and the Comforting Love of Jesus (He's at the center of the Rescue Plan!)  and she has never been alone.

Isaiah and Doug enjoying his book:)
Some people think that the story is just about them and God, but your mom figured out something else important:  She could be a part of God's Super Rescue Plan for other people too.  So she shared her love and her time with people and when she got sick she was honest about the journey and told people how hard it was and she told them that what gave her peace and joy in the middle of it was knowing the Rescuer.  

People from all over the world (Really!--other states and other countries) have heard your mom's story and have come to better understand what God's Rescue Plan means for them and how they can love and trust God the way your mom does so that they don't ever have to be alone and so that they can love God and feel his love forever too.

My prayer for you is that as you read this true adventure story and as you grow up that you would get to know and love the Rescuer the way that your mom does and that you would know that you are never alone and always loved by God.  I pray that you will love people well, and live life fully, and be faithful just like your mom.


Lori Lester-Brown


  1. I can't begin to tell you how many times, the legacy of Christina has left me speechless... speechless but FULL OF PRAISE for our Savior at the same time... The heart swells with praise while the tears flow..... love you, JoDee!

    1. Thanks:) I am often speechless also. Speechless but my heart is full. God has given so much to us...

  2. Speechless too. What an amazing group of people who will male sure Isaiah knows his mother and Jesus.


    1. I know their will be times Isaiah wishes he could just have a conversation with his mom but I also know that he has a wealth of writing, video, and pictures of his mom's life and heart. And there are the friends and family who have countless stories about Christina. I am looking forward to the day he says, "Tell me another story about mom."

  3. Jo Dee,
    Isaiah is indeed blessed to have such a wonderful family. In many ways, he may end up knowing his mother better than some kids ever will because Christina was so open about who she was and she (along with family and friends) documented her thoughts and beliefs so beautifully. If only we could all be so transparent!

    1. Yes, I think you are right, Mary. The woman who wrote the book about Christina just sent the hours and hours of interviews with Christina all beautifully packaged on CD's. What a powerful gift for all of us.
      I pray that Isaiah will understand what a huge gift he has been given.
      Perhaps we should learn from Christina and not be afraid to be known:)
      Love to you, (and thanks for all you have done)
      Jo Dee