Earlier tonight, my wife Laura screamed for me to come to the computer. She was weeping hysterically. I quickly scanned what she was reading, and instantly went numb. Our friend Virginia was murdered by her ex-boyfriend in my hometown on Labor Day evening. He shot her three times in front of witnesses, including children. Needless to say, we’re shocked and saddened. Those words don’t do those feelings justice.
It’s the second time we’ve lost a close friend to tragic circumstances. The first was to a tragic accident. This one was to domestic violence.
Virginia was one of the first people we befriended in VA when we moved up there to plant a church. She was one of the first people to become a Christian in our new church. I had the pleasure of performing her wedding. Like all of us, Virginia had her struggles. Her marriage didn’t last. During that time, she dropped out of church but not out of touch. My wife spoke to her several times over the past several years (Virginia was a nurse for a doctor my wife often had to talk to for her job as a home health nurse). The last time Virginia talked to my wife, she stated how she needed to get reconnected to the church. Although she was disconnected from the church, she never lost her faith. She really wanted to get back on the right track. In spite of her relationship struggles, Virginia was such a kind person and went out of her way to help others. Now she’s gone.
Please take a moment to pray for Virginia’s family as they cope with losing her way too soon. Pray for her ex-husband, who dreamed of a reconciliation that will never be realized. Pray for those who witnessed the murder. And pray for the man who shot her. It’s so easy to feel rage and anger–and to an extent, we should. It’s easy to pray and desire justice–and we should. But we should also pray for his repentance, that somehow God will spin this horrific crime and use it to bring him to Jesus.
We miss you terribly, Virginia.
Click here to read my wife’s thoughts.