Saturday, March 25, 2017

My Mandy Memories

Welcome... You can read my post below or listen to me read it to you by clicking HERE.
Last week, on Tuesday March 21st, Mandy Kelly, her husband, her 9 year old daughter and her 10 month old son all died in a tragic house fire.  Her 16yo daughter and 12yo son escaped along with her husband's mother. {News video link here.}  I am in shock.  I know her through Good Morning Girls {GMG}, which is the online bible study I've been a part of for over 5 years.  She was a gifted blogger at Worshipful Living so in honor of her memory, many of us bloggers are coming together to share what we've learned from Mandy.

From Mandy's Facebook page
Since joining GMG, I have been on a private Facebook group for leaders.  It's a great resource and a wonderful support system which I've been pretty active on from the very beginning.  Courtney Joseph is the creator of Good Morning Girls but for the past couple years she's had four women help with running the online outreach portion.  At one point those girls needed extra help so I, along with some other ladies were their support; we were called "Helping Hands" {HH} on the Leadership Group.  We answered people's questions, shared helpful links, commented on our daily reading and offered prayer support.  The leadership coordinator was Mandy Kelly. Because of my role in the leaders group and HH, Mandy and I had many private conversations.  One of the first was when she wanted me to be on the HH team!  I was honored!

One of my responsibilities was helping with the prayer requests.  I had an organized system for tracking them all and Mandy asked me to write a guest post on her blog explaining my method. {Click HERE to read about it on Mandy's blog.}

I prayed for Mandy through many things, from GMG leadership concerns to personal requests like waiting to adopt a baby.  {Just to give a bit of background, Mandy was single for a long time and married Scott, a widower with three children.  They married but felt led to adopt a baby.}  One night a couple years ago I sent her a private message to say I was praying:

That was back in 2015 when she was "matched" with a girl.  The birth mom ended up changing her mind right after the birth and Mandy had already met the baby.  It was a heart-breaking but Mandy always trusted God's timing.  You can read the blog post HERE where she wrote about how she felt after this happened.  Despite the pain, Mandy trusted that God was at work and we all continued praying for His perfect timing for her family to grow.  God answered all our prayers last year!  Little Judah was born, and it was awesome to see her get the longing of her heart fulfilled via adoption.

I never met Mandy but I am going to miss her so much.  The GMG leaders group is not going to be the same without her.  She was such an encouragement, and people are sharing lots of stories of what she meant to them.  Many stories on her Facebook profile are from people she knew in real life but there are a bunch of us online who never met her.  Similarly, we have "Mandy Memories" to add to her treasure box o' influence!  She invested TIME and put out lots of love even with little comments like this that made me smile when I was having a bum day.
One thing I've learned from Mandy's early death is that I too have LIMITED time on earth.  I don't know when my last day will be so when I tuck my kids in each night, it will be with more love and not so rushed.  {The fire happened through the night so I want my last moments with my family to be good.}
I want to live my life WELL like she did.  I want to LOVE the people in my life better too.  The stories and photos that are all over her Facebook profile and blog page are so sweet and encouraging. She really poured God's love into everyone she knew!  She paid it forward if you will!
And lastly, just a little lighter... I've been praying for direction with my blog and I know now that I want to continue to write. I enjoy it and if something does happen to me sooner than later, it's nice to know that this could be like a memory album for my kids and family.

Mandy's blog is Worshipful Living and what a treat her posts are now that she's gone.  She posted tons of videos if you wanted to hear her speak.  I told her I liked her voice... rusty little tone to it.  Her Facebook page is good too and she scheduled a bunch of posts so they are still publishing even though she's gone.  Some have been oh so applicable.  She encourages us on earth even though she's left us!
Facebook Page:

All she wanted to to do was sow seeds of faith wherever she went.  She definitely touched my life as a wonderful example of a faithful follower of Jesus.  She loved God with her whole heart and it overflowed to everyone she met, in person and online.

Mandy... I will worship with my life too.  Thanks for being a great example!!

Please pray for the kids left behind.  Mandy was their 2nd mother.  They lost their birth mom a few years ago so they and their whole family have been through so much loss already.  Thankfully they are leaning on God for strength.

If you wish to support the Kelly Family, their church is accepting donations.
Go to: 
Click on the green "Give" button and designate your donation for The Kelly Family.  

I appreciate you reading my thoughts as I wanted to contribute to the treasure of "Mandy Memories" that are being passed around.  

Rest well good and faithful servant.

Starting March 29th, feel free to read other's post about their own "Mandy Memories":

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1 comment:

Rhonda Kelly said...

Thank you so much for the wonderful tribute to our daughter Mandy and her family.

Rhonda Kelly (Mandy's mama)