Perfect, Magical, Miracle
Imagine someone who loves you so much they would do anything in the world for you, coming up and leaving you – a book. Not just any book but a very special book. One that the story is always changing – always expanding – full of life and adventure. It’s a story that makes you laugh and smile as you read. Everything about it is perfect and it’s magical.
The story is so full it leaves you almost bursting with happiness,and everyone around begins to hear of the story and wants to hear it also. They want it as a part of their lives. It doesn’t matter if you are sad – the story makes you laugh. It doesn’t matter if you are tired – the story brings you energy to keep on fighting. It doesn’t make any difference if you are lonely – this story makes you a part of something wonderful.
You take the book everywhere you go. It’s a part of everything you do.
Now, in this life there are inherent risks which we all acknowledge but we never give much thought to from day to day. If we did, we wouldn’t be able to really live life to its fullest. That is one of the lessons we learn from the book – the story must be written to its fullest every single day. Because nothing is guaranteed and nothing is promised.
So, one day the one who left the book in your possession in the beginning comes and says they need the book back. The book always belonged to them and they shared it with you but now they need it back. There’s also a promise brimming with hope. The promise is that you’ll see them again sometime soon and that the book will be there too.
In the meantime, there is a great void in the lives of all those who had been touched by this story in some way. There is sadness because that which meant so much to each of us isn’t here. But there is also that promise that the future holds the hope that we will once again share the stories from the book we loved so much.
Maeve Giardina, in her life was that book to her mom and dad, Nancy and Jeff. She was that story to many sitting here in this space today. She was perfect. She was magical. She was a miracle.
She was the story that was always changing, never settling to be ordinary in any way. She would wear the green tutu or the crazy socks or maybe – she would wear them both at the same time. She loved to share with all this great love she had for all.
Maeve was the one who made her parents life so full of living. Her vast interests made life one of those you hear about from time to time – the Never a Dull Moment life. It moves at a dizzying pace and if you aren’t special parents it can leave you completely used up. Nancy and Jeff were those very special parents. It’s why God placed this very special book in their possession. To love, to nurture, to provide an environment for this miracle child to become the story that has affected so many lives.
It was Nancy and Jeff that enabled Maeve, in her time here, to live her life to its fullest.
She was able to collect frogs with Josh, Ryan and Drake, zip lined in Ruby Falls, TN, went to an Opera House in Vienna, Austria, walked the Freedom Trail in Boston, visited Graceland, saw the musical Wicked in Houston and San Francisco, visited Hershey’s Chocolate World in Pennsylvania, hiked the Kancamagus Highway in NH, saw a couple NASCAR and motocross races along with Monster Trucks, camped with Girl Scouts troop 14184 and helped clean up an animal sanctuary, saw the giants in the Redwood forests of CA, competed with Extreme Team for Destination Imagination and the water polo team, held a baby alligator in FL, visited Illinois to see where her dad grew up and then to NH to meet mom’s childhood friends.
This isn’t all but you get an idea of how special of life she gave her parents.
She also gave a special life to her friends. Even if you didn’t know her she was going to make sure you got to know her. If you were sad she sensed it and wouldn’t allow you to wallow in that pit – she drew you out and into happiness. If someone was alone – they wouldn’t be for long – there were no lonely people in the world of Maeve. We all know sadness at some point but with Maeve it was most likely only Jeff and Nancy who knew. There wasn’t a lot of time for sadness in her world.
There was so much left to do for this 14 year old Miracle Child. Her mom and dad said they had things planned for some time ahead including diving lessons this summer. She wanted to experience everything she could.
I did ask Jeff and Nancy, knowing what they know now, were there any regrets. They looked at each other for just a moment and both answered, no. If there were it’s simply that there were things they planned they won’t be able to do with her now.
As a parent, I say to all the parents here today, let that be the answer should you find yourself in a similar situation in the future. Don’t look back with regret wishing you had done more. Tell your children daily or more often you love them.
To her friends here today and those who aren’t – live your life to its fullest each and every day. Find the good in everyone like Maeve was able to do. Pick others up when they are down. Never exclude others or talk bad about someone. Never allow your anger to last. Find a way every day to do something good for someone else. It’s what Maeve would do so follow her lead.
Because no one is guaranteed anything or promised a certain amount of time. There will come a time when the one who loves us so much he even went to his death on a cross for us, will come and say, I need them. You did a great job of caring for them. Thank you but I need them now. But so you know, I was laid in a tomb and everyone thought me dead. But I arose only three days later triumphant over death – the only thing that will keep you from seeing your loved one again.
We heard today, Maeve was perfected in a very short time so she didn’t need a long life to accomplish great works. We also heard how there are many rooms in the Father’s house and if there weren’t he wouldn’t have said he was coming back for us so we could all be together. Maeve has gone ahead – to prepare a place for us.
This great book – the Perfect, Magical Miracle book – is not with us now. But the story doesn’t end. It continues with each of you from this moment on. How will you complete her story?