February 20, 2011

Last Friday night, Tom, Mike and I met Gwen and Reedís four boys in Canton for the Toby Mac concert. A group called House of Heroes opened, and then Brandon Heath, and then the main event-- Toby Mac. Oh man, it was so loud and so full of energy and excitement. For me, being part of that crowd was just as memorable as the actual concert itself. Everyone was standing, arms in the air. It was just really cool to be a part of that. It was a really good concert-- the kids loved it. It was so cool to see them getting into it-- standing up and singing and stuff. They knew all the songs that Toby Mac was performing, so they were really excited to see him take the stage.

I got there when the boys got there-- at about 5:30, when the doors opened. We wanted to make sure that we got good seats. Tom and Mike werenít able to get there until a little after 7:00 though, since Tom had to work. The concert had already started by the time they arrived. The boys were really anxious to have them get there. They kept borrowing my phone to call them and text them to find out when they were getting there. I am looking at my sent messages right now, quoting one of Joshís textís to Tom. It said, ďI just wanted to know if you guys will be here soon. I really look forward to seeing you. See you soon.Ē When the concert started, Josh had one eye in front of him looking at the stage and one eye behind him waiting for Tom and Mike. When they did come, he took off and ran to meet them and show them to their seats with us.


Over the past couple of weeks I have been thinking a lot about what Jeff and Amy have been doing together. We kind of had some fun with that thought at the calling hours and funeral. But itís sometimes hard to actually believe that they are together and that they are actually doing things right now. Itís really hard to wrap my mind around sometimes.

But the thought occurred to me while I was there that what we were experiencing that night very well could be what Jeff and Amy were doing at the same time. Surrounded by crowds of people, all singing and dancing and full of excitement. Anxious for the main event to start, but enjoying what was going on at the present time anyway. And also keeping one eye out for the rest of the family to arrive. I bet when Jeff found out that Amy was on her way, he left his seat and ran up to meet her and show her her seat. Amy probably asked about what she missed already, but still anxiously awaiting the main event. And they are part of the crowd celebrating and enjoying what is going on.

Thereís a party going on right now in heaven, guys. And there are empty seats there with my name and the rest of my familyís name on them. The main event hasnít started yet, but I know that Jeff and Amy are waiting for us to get there. I know they are caught up in what is going on there, but I know they have to have one eye behind them, waiting to see if one of us is coming through the doors. Interestingly, the last thing that I said to Amy when we were leaving the funeral home was for her to save me a seat, because I am coming soon!

Brian (bjrhinehart@juno.com)



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