The Seeds Jimmie Planted

I felt myself tear up as I caught sight of him. Jimmie’s grandpa. The one he was named after. I hadn’t known if any of the family would be in church today. Then it dawned on me. The old saint had come into the arms of Jesus, where he could find refuge and strength to deal with the next few days. Early yesterday morning Jimmie, age twenty-two, was shot to death at the restaurant where he worked. On the good side of town.

I know Jimmie’s grandma and grandpa, but I don’t know them well. And I only knew Jimmie as a member of our church. By sight. A few years after we came to Indiana, Jimmie was the driver of a car that flipped. He was OK. The young man who was thrown from the car was permanently brain damaged. Both were from Christian families. We praised God that they were alive as we struggled to understand. Why was Jimmie’s physical healing complete and the other boy’s not?

Jimmie and his mom and sister generally attend the second church service. The hubby and I go to the first. I see the mom occasionally. I remember her giving thanks that her daughter had made it safely to Texas from the college she attended in New Orleans when Katrina hit. And I gave thanks with her. There’s not a mother out there that doesn’t know that God has spared her children from all sorts of things that could have happened.

But he didn’t spare Jimmie. Not this time. In a senseless act of violence brought on by an argument that wasn’t even that serious according to witnesses, Jimmie lost his life and another young man is struggling for his.

Our pastor opened our service asking that we keep Jimmie’s family in our prayers and reminding us that death does NOT have the victory. Then, a little later on in the story, he shared what happened at Jimmie’s house last night.

Young people had gathered to comfort Jimmie’s mom and sister. I am so thankful for that. Lots of people only remember the bad things young people do. They don’t pay attention to the fact that young people often rise to the occasion.

At about 11PM, while those gathered were praying, Jimmie’s grandpa felt led to share this story. He didn’t say that Jimmie was perfect. None of our children are. But he did say that Jimmie had learned two simple songs as a child, and that those songs had sustained him as he walked through life. One of them was Jesus Loves Me. The other was Into My Heart. After he shared that, our pastor said, Jimmie’s grandpa began to sing.  The young people, through their tears, began to sing with him.

Like I said, I didn’t know Jimmie well. But this is what I think. I think that, even in his death, by sharing songs that Jimmie loved, someone will be reached for Christ. I don’t know why God called him home. But I know that through his grandpa’s comment, Jimmie had the opportunity to plant a couple last seeds. And maybe the good that will come out of his death will be one more soul led to Christ.

Please pray for Jimmie’s grandma and grandpa, Jim and Pat. His mom and dad are Sue and Kenny, and his sister’s name is Kayla.

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

–Romans 8:28


2 Responses to “The Seeds Jimmie Planted”

  1. 1 Rochelle Ritzi October 28, 2007 at 11:57 pm

    Wow… I will be praying. I know this is a difficult time for everyone, but I know God will is there to comfort. Take care.

  2. 2 Becky October 29, 2007 at 5:31 am

    Thank you so much, Rochelle. Prayer always helps.

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