Those of you who receive my Pilgrim Scribblings e-mail updates will already be aware that a dear friend of mine, Watson Atkinson, died in the Philippines several days ago following a severe heart attack. His dear wife Noemi and their special adopted child Jenalyn (from the Philippines) grieve the loss of a wonderful husband and father. Watson will be buried in the Philippines this coming week.
I struggle to come to grips with this seeming tragedy. Watson is "absent from the body and present with the Lord" but those who remain are left to grieve...although "they don't sorrow as others who have no hope."
It's hard to imagine Noemi and Jenalyn coming home to an empty house with all the reminders of Watson there. It will be difficult for me to get any sense of closure because I won't get to see Watson's body.
We joked about growing old two weeks ago while we were chatting at church. He spoke often in recent months about being ready to go "home" but we never thought it would be this soon. Even though Watson lived in the Peterborough area (Millbrook) his heart had been in the Philippines for years. He had a heart for World Missions and served on the Missions Committee at Auburn Bible Chapel.
Watson, I'll miss you, dear friend. Noemi and Jenalyn, you are in our prayers and you are safely gripped and embraced by God's everlasting arms.
Thanks for praying for Noemi and Jenalyn, my friends!