True Love

claireparker-icononly-011 Cor 13 “Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends”Valentine’s Day is a day of love, but how do you celebrate it when one of your greatest loves is no longer with you? It proved to not only be a tough question to answer, but a difficult one to experience. Saturday, was hard. You can’t help but think of the sweet kisses you will not receive, the tender hugs you will not share, the sugar cookies that won’t be baked, the homemade cards that will never be made, or the memories of a father bringing his little girl red roses that were never realized. However, my baby girl experienced Valentine’s Day among the truest form of love, among the origin of long, among her Heavenly Father. For that I am thankful.

After many tears, and many prayers God finally settled a peace into my heart by reminding me of what true love is really about.

-True love is selfless, making its opposite selfishness. Threfore, dwelling on myself is not a way to honor the love I have for my daughter. Instead I should pray for strength and comfort so that I may turn my thoughts and prayers towards others. Love finds a way to put others before ourselves. It mends the heart.

-True love is God. Scripture says that “God is love”. So I find joy in knowing that Claire knows a greater love than anyone on Earth by being in the presence of God. The more I walk with God, the more I feel the Holy Spirit inside of me, allowing me to share something with Claire, the love of our Lord. This will sustain me until the day of our reunion in heaven.

-True love is action. Rather than holding on to the memory of Claire, Jordan and I want to share it with others. Rather than being bitter for what she endured, we are grateful for the opportunity to support others by showing the love of Christ at a difficult time. Galatians 6:2 "Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ."

box 1 box 3Our foundation’s motto is “For the Love of Claire”. Our daughter brought the most sweet, innocent, and pure form of love into our lives. Losing her helped us see what matters most in life. It is not comfort, security, possessions, or money; it’s people. God’s second commandment to us is to “love your neighbor as yourself”. Through Claire, Christ continues to show us what true love is. That is why we are so excited about the Claire Care Boxes. When families receive a new pediatric diagnosis, it can bring your world to a halt, and this box gives us an opportunity to support, uplift, and encourage at this difficult time. Let them know they are not alone, Christ is with them.

Claire's Care BoxThe first box that we sent out went to a mother of an 8 year old boy with a stage 4 neuroblastoma. She told me that when she received the box she cried tears of joy for the first time in a long time. Jordan and I believe in the mission God has lead us to, so we put together 10 more boxes. On Friday we will delivered them to Duke University Hospital, and pray that God works through them to touch other families in a way only He can.

Losing the love of a child is something I will never forget, and something I can never replace, but helping other children fighting a battle like Claire's gives my life purpose. I am thankful for the hope that this ministry provides not only to those who receive the box, but for us as well. Romans 15:13 “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.”

In Christian Love,

Connie Parker