I attended the viewing of a man last night whom I’d only seen twice. Not something I do often.
On Thursday, a friend told me about a man who had died unexpectedly and peacefully in his sleep this week. I asked who it was and she said, “Ken”. My response was, “Ken, from your writer’s group?” Ken was a friend of hers from a weekly writers group that she and her husband attend. I met Ken the night he came for the first time and the only time I have visited that group. I saw him again a few months later at a mutual friend’s birthday party.
Ken was one of those people who when you met him, you instantly felt as if you had known him for a long time. So, when my friend asked if I wanted to attend the viewing with her and her husband, I quickly replied, “Yes!” I was honestly a little surprised that I wanted to go.
The viewing was last night. My friend, her husband, another mutual friend and myself traveled across town to the funeral home. As we rode along, my three traveling companions told stories about their friendships with Ken, how they’d met him, stories he had told them, and more about his 85 years of living in one town in Missouri.
Ken had served in the Korean war, returned home, married, started a family, taught school, served as Mayor of that one town, and served his community. He was motived by serving others. He began attending the writers group last year to get help with the many stories he had experienced and in telling about this one town in Missouri. That task will hopefully be fulfilled by some of the people in the writer’s group he attended.
We paid our respects, watched a slide show with probably one hundred slides … all with Ken smiling, many of him holding one baby or another, and from different parts of his long life. We spoke with friends and family and could tell that Ken loved well and was well-loved by many.
Today as I’ve been working, I’ve been pondering. Would someone attend my viewing … someone I’d only seen twice? Have I lived my life in such a way that it would make that kind of impression or impact on someone else?
While focused on delivering the message, I have connected the two sides of the coin with my businesses. Since 2004, I have focused on working with thousands of Christian communicators and event planners across the country as the founder and owner of Empowering Christian Communicators, specializing in training and supporting faith-based communicators, and Christian Speakers Services – a speaker bureau with a ministry heart.
My diverse background in business, marketing and communication gives me a real edge in assisting Christian communicators.