Jason & Lindsay ice skating in Michigan.
8 years ago last night, Jason & Lindsay fell asleep side by side in their sleeping bags, after a wonderful day spent together... enjoying each other's company during their last weekend together in California before flying home to get married. They took pictures during that day as they toured the San Francisco area and took pictures of the sunset they enjoyed. They wrote about their gratitude to God in a journal. Little did they know that within the next few hours or so, they would see and experience heaven and meet Jesus face-to-face! I thank God that they had lived an exemplary life of faith and that they were ready to meet their Creator! Because what their killer intended for evil, God turned around for good. I am always in awe of that.
I am so happy that their last day on earth was one they spent together. They had a carefree day and had a great time! It's somewhat haunting to look at the photos that came out of their camera. It still baffles me how this happened... how a seemingly fun and carefree weekend turned into such horror. I pray that they did not see it coming.
Last photo from Lindsay's camera... this is the
beautiful sunset she wrote about in the journal.
I think about how 8 years have seemingly flown by but yet seem like a long time too. Some things about that time I remember like they happened yesterday! And then I think about how in heaven, time and space don't exist like they do here. So for Jason & Lindsay, does it feel like they've been in heaven for 8 years or infinitely more than that? It sure is an immense comfort to know that they're in the best place they could possibly be! And before we know it we will be there too. No one knows how long our lives will last. We all know someone who has died way too young... reminding us that life really is short and not to waste it! And even if you live to be 100, life is still relatively short. In the great scheme of things, our life really is like a vapor, just as the Bible says (James 4:14). We only have this window of opportunity (our time here on earth) to get right with God! We can choose the ways of the world or we can choose God's ways. As C.S. Lewis wrote:
"There are only two kinds of people in the end: those who say to God, 'Thy will be done,' and those to whom God says, in the end, 'Thy will be done.'"
So my question to you is, are you right with God? If you died today, do you know where you're going? This is a very serious question that I pray you will not take lightly! The Bible, God's Word, has made it very clear:
"Jesus answered, 'I am the Way and the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.'" ~John 14:6
"Jesus said to her, 'I am the Resurrection and the Life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?'" ~John 11:25-26
"For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life." ~John 3:16
Jesus is the KEY to salvation and eternal life! Most people believe in God... even satan and his demons do. But we cannot be saved simply by believing God exists and/or trying to live a "good life." We can only be saved through Christ Jesus... by humbling ourselves, turning to God, repenting of and turning away from our sins and then following Him! Salvation is about HIM and the sacrifice HE made, dying on the cross to take the penalty of OUR sins and then defeating death as He rose from the grave! Salvation is not obtained through our own deeds... and thank the Lord for that! NONE of us could ever make it into heaven on our own accord. Praise God that He loved us enough to send His Son to make it possible. We must accept Christ, believe in Him and follow Him in order for that salvation to become ours.
"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In His great mercy He has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith - of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire - may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. Though you have not seen Him, you love Him; and even though you do not see Him now, you believe in Him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls." ~1 Peter 1:3-9
Please pray for the Allens and the Cutshalls as they mark another anniversary of Jason & Lindsay's deaths. Undoubtedly, this is always a difficult day. Yet they have always maintained their faith in God's sovereignty and have trusted and relied on Him to get them through all of this.
Also, please pray for justice for Jason & Lindsay! Someone out there knows something. Maybe they're afraid to come forward or just don't want to be a snitch. My greatest concern is that whomever committed these murders has either done it again or could in the future. Anyone capable of shooting complete strangers as they lay sleeping and utterly defenseless is capable of any brutal and heartless act! None of us want another family to go through this!
With all of that said, Jason's mom wrote something that I want to share today:
As I (Delores) write this, Chris and Kathy Cutshall are preparing for their trip to Michigan, so that we may be together on the anniversary of Jason and Lindsay’s home going. No doubt we will reminisce about things of the past and anticipate things of the future. We are truly thankful for the Cutshall family, who God in His infinite wisdom gave to us to share in this journey. They are an inspiration to our family.
It has been eight years since we have known the simple joy of being with Jason and Lindsay. We remember talking with them, laughing with them and sharing in their dreams for the future. And then one night, everything changed. They went home to a great celebration, and we were left with pain, sorrow and disbelief. In the framework of God’s grace, through the passing of time, the burden has become lighter. Yet, there still lingers an empty place in our hearts, because we miss them so much.
Shortly after their deaths, we read Randy Alcorn’s book, "Heaven." It gave us comfort and encouragement. This summer, I am revisiting that book. This quote, taken from that book, reminds us of the glorious reunion that will one day take place:
"I know that Christ is all in all; and that it is the presence of God that makes Heaven to be heaven. But yet, it much sweetens the thoughts of that place to me that there are such a multitude of my most dear and precious friends in Christ.”
~Puritan Richard Baxter
We love you Jason and Lindsay!
Dad, Mom, Vanessa, Nate, Elizabeth, Howie, Grant, and Jalynn