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South Africa
My husband, Brett and I live in beautiful South Africa and have been blessed with the most precious family. We have 2 very beautiful and brave daughters, Tianna (15) and Angelee (12) and a very precious little boy called Zac who touched our hearts forever in his 1 day here on earth. We never would have imagined that we would have to live this side of Heaven without our sweet boy who was born with half a heart, but every day Jesus carries us through and is teaching us more than ever how to live, laugh and love fully. 3 years ago our faithful Great Restorer graciously blessed us once again with another son ... our beloved Gabriel ... a ray of sunshine in all our lives! "Love in Action" is our journey as a family to love the way Jesus is teaching us to love and live.

Blog Archive

20 October 2011

Zac's "Birthday Party"

Blogging on my side has been quiet as we have come home from Cape Town to a house full of family and friends who have been here for us to cry with, share with and just love us as we take in all that we have just walked through as a family.
On Sunday we got to throw a "birthday party" celebrating Zac's one day here on earth. I cannot explain the myriad of emotions that I have been through in advance to his thanksgiving service. No parent ever expects that they will ever have to plan a memorial service for any of their children. What I have experienced though through this whole journey is that God's peace and grace goes so way beyond our understanding to be able to carry and sustain us through the hardest of emotions that we will ever face. As Sunday dawned, His peace settled deeply within my heart and the Lord gave me His precious gift of grace to fully take in His presence with us in that hall filled with precious, loving people who were there to celebrate the gift of Zac's life. To bear witness to this little boy's testimony in impacting so many hearts for Jesus still astounds us as a family. God is actively using his story to heal broken hearts. The more we hear, the more Brett and I realise in our hearts that though our little boy is not present here on earth with us, he is very much alive and fulfilling his destiny in God in pointing people to the heart of Jesus. 
The service was so filled with the peace and presence of Jesus. Brett and I just wanted to throw a big bash for our precious love boy and allow it to be a time of "thanksgiving". That is something that Zac taught us as a family ... to be thankful for the gifts that Jesus gives us. It's not always about the time frames that we are given with each other that will touch and change our hearts forever. Zac was only given 1 day in our arms, but everything about his journey and life with us has impacted our hearts for eternity. So we wanted to give God thanks that He chose us to be Zac's family. We filled the entrance hall with 100 of the brightest balloons we could find.
We worshiped together, shared the most beautiful video & photos that a friend of ours put together of our sweet boy and then shared our hearts as a family of the impact Zac has had in our lives and what his testimony is to a very broken and hurting world.
We were so touched by the support of so many who came to be with us. My mommy's heart was so comforted to see how Jesus surrounded my girls with their cuzzies and friends who wrapped their arms around each of my girls during this service and just loved them through it. I think they are the bravest big sisters I have ever known! This pic shows the love as my big girl is surrounded by her protective cuzzie and friends.
We all went outside with a balloon in one hand and Lindt chocolate in the other (only the best for our boy!) to release a hundred colourful balloons in his honour while we ate our chocolates to celebrate the sweet gift that Zac David Robinson will always be to us ... our sweet little love boy who has forever shaped our hearts. To watch those balloons all group together and float towards the sun touched my heart so much. So like Zac ... always pointing us towards the Son of Righteousness.

Standing outside surrounded by my precious family and friends, feeling the sunshine kiss my body as we looked at those balloons floating so high until they disappeared I was able to smile knowing that my precious Jesus gave Zac a good gaze into all the love being sent his way. I can just picture the angels being sent to collect everyone of those balloons to show Zac :0) Only Jesus knows how to bring comfort and hope into the hardest moments of our lives. He is doing that in our lives ... showing us that we can grieve with hope and peace because we know that our precious boy lives in perfect heart peace and knows how loved he is.
Throughout this whole experience Jesus has wrapped arms around Brett, the girls and I. We have been saturated in His love through His precious body - the church. Constantly the love pours in from those we know, and even more that we have never had the privilege of meeting. Thank you so much to all of you who have comforted and encouraged us along on our.
After the service the entire family went off to a lunch venue where a precious lady had organized a "party" for Zac's little sisters and cousins in his honour. Oh my goodness ... it so touched Brett and my heart. She went out of her way to decorate everything with blue balloons and have party packs for each of the kids. This is how Jesus loves us!
It was the perfect finish to a perfect service honouring our boy. Again the Lord went all out in bringing all of Brett and my family together to be with us - from my mom in the US, to my sister and all her family from Johannesburg to all of Brett's family from out of town too as well as some of our dearest friends who flew in from different places in the country to be with us. What a joy to be surrounded by family who have learned to laugh and cry with us. (The picture below is just 1 of 4 tables full of family and friends who stood around us at this time).
 (My mom and sis. Don't you just love all the bright colours we had everyone wear! 
Colours to make Zac smile. I especially have fallen in love with blue ... forever now a "boy mommy" too.) 
 
As I finally come to the end of this post, Brett, the girls and I want to thank you all once again for every prayer that has been prayed along our journey ... for every message written to encourage and strengthen us ... for every meal and plant dropped off ... for being willing to bravely walk alongside of us and be the arms of Jesus hugging us as we heal. We are forever grateful for all your love and support. You all represent the heart and compassion of Jesus so well. Thank you precious family and friends.

All our love to each of you xoxox
Brett & Janine 

10 comments:

Alet Kapp said...

Hi Janine Brett and girls,

Thank you for sharing your incredible life changing compassionate story and celebration on Zac's life. It has been such a joy to trust with you and put our faith out with you, and the joys we experienced through your experience was just so amazing.

You have certainly touch so many lives and mine by the way you embraced God! I have shared your testimony and experience with so many people that were trusting God for a miracle, and I know it has given them faith to hold on for their miracle! Great is the victory that is still going to be seen from this!

I pray that our loving heavenly Father will continue to comfort you all and bring peace that surpasses all understanding. We love you dearly and keep you always in our thoughts and prayers!

All my love
Auntie Alet XXXX

pam said...

jan - thank you for sharing this story and your heart.

i pray that the grace, kindness, wisdom and love you embody and share will be multiplied back to you and your family in the most unexpected and breathtaking ways.

much love.
pam

Debra said...

Janine I have told you this over and over but I want to say it again.... you are a very special family and will still touch many hearts as you grow old together.... Your words 'The more we hear, the more Brett and I realise in our hearts that though our little boy is not present here on earth with us, he is very much alive and fulfilling his destiny in God in pointing people to the heart of Jesus.' really touched my heart! Love Debs xx

Jedidja said...

What a perfect service in honor of your boy. It's very special that you so open and free communicate. Thank you! I pray that God continues His work: touching hearts and lives by your story of Zac. A sweet hug from Holland, also for the girls. Take heart and look upon Jesus, our Shepherd. He will carry you through the difficulties of life.

Shelby said...

What a special celebration of LIFE. You are continually in my prayers.

Shelby said...

What a special celebration of LIFE. You are continually in my prayers.

EJN said...

Janine,
One of the lines in a poem of "Contentment" in the Valley of Vision - Puritan prayer says in our faith we have "beacons bright to allure.", of such are you and your family. Your hope and trust in our Lord during this time radiates His light.
Balloons -What a precious and appropriate way to send your love notes to little Zac
Prayers and thoughts are with you sweet Sister-
Jojo

Cynthia said...

I'm so glad that you were able to truly celebrate baby Zac's life and find joy in his time with you! My heart breaks when I think of how hard it is to lose a child. Love him, remember him, grieve about him and allow yourself the tears, I would often remember the scripture where it says "Jesus wept" when I needed to feel okay about grieving. I will continue to hold your family in our prayers!
Cynthia
http://www.adreamadoption.blogspot.com

Denise Malafaia Cerqueira said...

Dear Janine, Brett, and Tianna Angelle!
As I read your post and saw the pictures of everything that happened that day of celebration for the precious life of Zac, the Lord was speaking to my heart teach me some things. What other explanation for everything we have for what has happened in your life? Otherwise that supernaturally, you, and all of us learn how to make a true celebration of life. Then I remembered the words of Paul: "For if our hope in Christ only limited in this dimension of life, we are the most unhappy of all men." (I Corinthians 15:19)
This means that everything here is too small, too limited, so we're stuck in this dimension. In Christ we are unlimited, no barriers, no misery, there is sorrow enough to stop us we walk like winners even in the face of death. For those who are in Christ there is no limitation, there is no barrier, so there is no death, hallelujah! She was unsuccessful, aeluia! Just as those balloons that were full and could only filled up, all of us in Christ. Independent of the time we come here, like those balloons go up. It seems that we are without life, but we who are in Christ, we are never lifeless. So we went up like those balloons that went up with no pain, mild, without trauma. So it is with us, we are raised to the heights full of life and not death, because Jesus won for us. So it was with Zac. It was up, up until he entered the house of the Father
Do not know if I gave you to understand. That's what the Spirit came to understand about this life event, inevitable. For us, so it should be something wonderful, colorful, festive, this rise not in death but in life. Full as those balloons. We need to learn so much still. Zac learned in much less time than we knew?
I wish I had been there watching aquels balloons rising. I would give applause to the life of that noble boy, who brought many teachings.
So you want apludir that the photos showed us just that: life will never cease to exist because of the death if we are in Christ.
So beautiful kisses in the heart of the family of Zac.

Susan A said...

dear Janine,
I am thanking the Lord for His peace and presence that carries you through. Thinking of you. May His love shine through.