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Today makes one year since the death of my husband, Mike Caulk.

Mike Caulk 1 year collage

Anniversary’s and holidays are especially difficult because you miss them so much more. You mind reflects on what you wish you had said, not knowing it would be the last time you spoke to them.

I don’t want to relive those thoughts of that day, as I have written about it here, should you want to read. I know Mike is doing fine and happy and at peace. He is with family and friends he is experiencing what those of us here who believe in Jesus and the Resurrection only long and hope for. He is seeing what those of us here can only imagine and hearing what those of us here will one day hear.

Life is a continuity

What we experience here on earth, our mind, our will and our emotions carry over into our next life. We are not a discombobulated spirit’s floating around on clouds with harps and looking like angels.

We enter our new life with all of our thoughts, memories, and personalities that we had living on planet earth. And yes our deeds.

When we arrive at Heaven’s gate we enter in not because of what we did on earth, but because of what Jesus did for us. It is His blood and righteousness that covers us and welcomes us in. We don’t get in because of our good deeds contrary to what many people think.

Judgement

When we get to heaven we will be judged according to what we have done on earth. Some people have referred to this as a life review. One of Jamie’s friends mother died. She was pronounced dead after a motor cycle accident and that is what happened to her. She said, Jesus held her and showed her, her life in a loving way…like a video or a life review.

Do you think Jesus get’s mad at us?

I don’t.

I think his judgement is wrapped in love and we now have the clarity of mind to see, how we should have behaved or handled each situation. I believe he shows us that in love.

My husband use to say, God IS love, He is not just loving. That is hard to grasp but Love is His nature not something He just does.

Luke 12:2-3 says that “Whatever you have said in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have spoken in someone’s ear will be proclaimed on the rooftops.” When I read that it use to be scary to me, that someday everything I had done or said would be exposed. But, now that I know God and His love, I understand that it is done in love, not judgement. Yes everything we have done and spoken will come to the light of day, and we will be sorrowful for those things, but he will wipe away all the tears and sorrow

Tim Keller, said in one if his fabulous sermons, “In the worlds finale, at that moment of Eternal Harmony, something so precious will come to pass. It will justify every ounce of suffering. Everything sad, will come UNTRUE, and yet the Resurrection will be even Greater for having once been true.” 

Wow, let that sink in.

So today we are sad but someday everything sad will come untrue.

I miss my husband everyday as do my children, he was such an amazing, giving person who gave completely to his family. And yet we know that our time on earth is short and eternity is forever. We will all be together living on a Resurrected earth enjoying each other and all of God’s creation that He intended when the world began.

family

Caulk family at Andrew’s graduation.

 

 

 

 

My daughter,Christa Caulk blogs here: Letter to Heaven, My Beloved Jamie | Pocket Full of Memories.

In this letter to heaven she writes a letter to heaven for Jamie Caulk, her brother. She has such an amazing writer style, so heartfelt.

 

 

Mike Caulk

June 17, 2013 — 4 Comments

Mike Caulk

Mike Cauolk I am sitting here this morning in the quiet of my house. It has been 5 days since my husband died. The house is so quiet, I am assuming all the children are over at my daughter Christa’s house.

My close friend from Tennessee left this morning so I have been up since 4:30. Last night all of us (my children, Mark and Debbie Caulk their children, Sharon and Annie)sat on my deck around a fire pit sharing Mike Caulk stories.

I wanted to share at the Celebration of Life Service for Mike on Saturday, but there were no words to summarize almost 36 years of marriage.

This morning I have poured over the hundreds of FaceBook messages, texts and emails. Like I did for Jamie I set up a folder to save and re-read every one of them when I feel sad and need encouragement.

I feel so incredibly blessed to have all of you in my life. Thank you for your prayers, thoughts and kind words. They mean the world to me.

On Saturday, the day of Mike’s Celebration of Life Service I was up early and reading excerpts from my favorite book, Heaven by Randy Alcorn letting the peace of God’s Word speak to me about our Eternal Home. I have said many times and will say again…I could not have survived the last 20 months without having an eternal perspective.

Many of the comments on Facebook and at the visitation said, “You are so strong…strongest person I know…another tragedy…how can she go through this again?”

I wanted to address these comments and first of all say I know and understand what you “think” you see but….

I am not strong.

He is strong.

I am not holding on to God; He is holding on to me.

The strength you see is not coming from anything good or natural in me, but supernatural because it comes from Him.

Yes our family is grieving…but it is not the same as those who grieve without hope. We know there is immortality beyond death, and we believe in the hope of the resurrection. We grieve with hope because we absolutely know we will see Mike, Jamie and Lillian again.

The scripture we had placed on the bench dedicated to Jamie and “Lilly Bear” was “absent from the body.. present with the Lord.” 1 Cor. 5:8   This has become my families life’s verse.

The afternoon or early evening of June 12th, when Mike arrived at Heaven’s gates, he had a huge welcoming party. I know he ran into Jamie’s arms and Mike’s mother, Lillian handed “Lilly Bear” to him. He had missed them both so much and would break down in tears at various times in utter grief.

I am finishing up the book, of our story on the death of Jamie and what we learned about the lie of “brain death”.

After I had finished the original manuscript, my editor Janet sent back the first chapter and of course I had Mike read it for his thoughts and reactions, well I sure got them as he just wept. Never again was he able to read the edited chapters, it was just too hard. “I’ll read the whole thing when it is published Muffy, you have such an important message to get out,” he said.

Tragedy

Is it a tragedy, when we lose a love one?  That my friends depends on how you look at life. Life on earth is a dot, it is short and over quick. This is true whether you leave at 13 weeks, 27, 64 years old or later. The bible says, “life is a breath, a vapor”. We are one single breath away from where we will spend eternity.

That is a reality.

For the Christian, death is not a tragedy but a glorious promotion—not the sad end, but the glorious beginning. Sometimes we hear people say how sad it is that one should die so young. But that is a deception of Satan. If a young Christian dies, it is not sad but glorious. Many of the fairest buds that ever grew on earth have blossomed in Heaven. ~ Dr. John Rice

All of us at the appointed time will leave planet earth. There is an appointed time for your birth and death. The Bible tells us that “all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be”  Psalm 139:16 

There is an appointed time for everything. A time to give birth and a time to die. Ecclesiastes 1-2

My family anticipates (looks forward) to heaven. This anticipation does not eliminate our pain or grief we are experiencing now… it only puts it in perspective. We long to be living together on the New Heaven and New Earth with all those who love and have loved Jesus during their short time on this present earth.

Romans 8:18-24

For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God…waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body.

Mike and Missy CaulkMike got up at 3:30 every morning to prepare his lesson plans for his students at Belleville High School. I would awaken at around 5:30 or 6:30, he would always have coffee made and be sitting at our dining room table, listening to worship songs as he prepared.

I will forever miss him most in the early morning hours, along with the thousands of other things we experienced together. But, I will see him again. It was not a good-bye but “see you later, my lover, my friend and my soul mate.”

 

***Many of you have asked me if I need anything to let you know, here is what I would like to ask you, please pray for me to continue to raise my children with godly wisdom and help me by subscribing to this blog.***

 

 

How are you, Missy Caulk?

ann arbor sceneFor all my life I have gone by the name Missy. Now that I am writing a blog on the death of my son, Jamie and a book to be released in October (two-year anniversary of my son’s death) I am using Melissa Caulk.

I am doing this because being a licensed Real Estate Broker in Michigan the name Missy is all over the internet associated with Missy.

The Spring market in Ann Arbor is crazy…good crazy. Homes are selling very quickly and we are still very low on inventory. Right now my paying job,  real estate is consuming my life this time of year.

That’s ok…that’s life.

I’m still trying to catch up financially from the cost of funerals for Jamie and Lillian one month apart in 2011. The initial days and month I was still numb and in shock of their deaths, therefore, real estate took a very back seat…ok… I didn’t work for 4 months.

I am playing catch up on so many things in my career.

Grief

Grief is like the waves of an ocean I have read probably every book on grief published. Well…almost. Some more than once. Things that made no sense at the time, make sense now.

I read that grief was like waves in the ocean. Sometimes it is calm and peaceful and other times when a storm is coming it produces violent waves.

I get that now, but I didn’t then.

Writing

I have a great editor Janet Benge, helping with my book. My friend Renee Meloche, in Ann Arbor who is an author herself referred Janet to me. Janet and her husband Geoff, learned their craft of writing from John and Elizabeth Sherrill, who wrote The Cross and the Switchblade, The Hiding Place, God Smuggler, and many other classic Christian books.

Together they have written over 150 books.

Heroes of History by Janet and Geoff Benge

Writing our story is hard work

I’ve been blogging in the real estate sphere since 2006 being in the top 15 of most subscribed bloggers on the ActiveRain Real Estate Network of 341,105 professional members. I am still amazed at that because I rarely blog there much anymore.

I’ve had the privilege of meeting so many people from my blogging efforts on ActiveRain in real life and become really connected with agents across the United States and Canada.

They were some of my supportive allies when I lost my child.

Blogging is not like writing a book, at least not for me. Although I’ve always tried to be transparent in my real estate blogging, Janet is gently yet emotionally pulling our story out of me. Digging deep to remember the emotions of what we went through at Vanderbilt when I heard the news about Jamie.

When Janet sends me a Chapter to “edit” or “add to” or provide “more details”, I ask my family to help so we can    combine our memories together. After a few times of that they (yes all of them) politely say “no” or “later mom”.

I get it.

It is hard.

Like most people Janet and Geoff had not heard about “brain death” and the reality that you are still alive when your organs are taken. She felt I had a story to tell and thankfully decided to work with me.

Although some of what I write here on MelissaCaulk.com will be included in the book, in order to help families going through a traumatic event in their lives and trying to grasp what the doctors mean when they say “brain death,”it is our story from the time I got the call on my way down to Nashville in hopes of celebrating my granddaughter Presley’s birthday. MiMi and Presley Ann on 1st birthday

If you are following this blog don’t expect it to be a rehash of all I have written here it is not.

I am so thankful I have Janet to hold my hand through the journey of writing and telling our story.

Will you help get our story out, by subscribing, tweeting within your sphere of influence or sending this blog? I sure would appreciate it.

 

Breakthrough

Wednesday night I went went some of my good friends to see the movie Breakthrough. I basically knew the storyline… that a 14 year old boy named John Smith had a miraculous recovery after being without oxygen for 45minutes.

Doctors confirmed the miracle.

A suburban St. Louis teenager who slipped through an icy lake last month and had no pulse for nearly 45 minutes after he was rescued has made a “miraculous” recovery, doctors said. In fact, 14-year-old John Smith’s health has improved so much since the Jan. 19 accident that doctors allowed him to go home Wednesday, NBC affiliate KSDKreported. “I knew there were a lot of people in my corner praying for me,” John, an eighth-grader from St. Charles, told the station.

Response

I thought it would be a feel good move, and it is IF you have NOT lost a child under similar circumstance. Not the drowning but the “critical, no hope diagnosis”.

For me personally Breakthrough was incredibly hard to watch. Every thing from the mom rubbing her son’s feet, (I did) to the medical staff talking negatively in front of her son (they did) to the praying of John Smiths classmates. (Lee University did) There was so many similarities that had I not been with good friends I would have had to walk out.

Breakthrough is Steven Curry’s, a professional basketball player for the Golden State Warriors of the National Basketball Association first film and I am sure it will be the start of his faith based film career. I hope so because in every other way it is an excellent film.

“John’s story is nothing short of incredible,” said Curry in a statement to THR. “It’s a story about the power of prayer and perseverance and one I immediately connected to. After reading the script, I knew I wanted to be a part of bringing it to life onscreen.”

Trailer

So go see the movie, but if you have lost a child be prepared for a lot of buried memories to pop up. I wish I did not having to experience the pain and memories all over again.

Seven years and yet the pain all comes back with a vengeance. Yet the power of prayer, miracles and God’s Sovereignty is all covered very well in the movie Breakthrough.

Happy Resurrection Day to all my followers.

Jamie Caulk 3/6/84 to 10/20/11