Eulogy for a Friend – Farewell David

David's quote

I lost a dear friend this week. His untimely departure will be a great void in our lives, for though he never grasped the full import of his influence, he was a doorway to so many good things and beauty in so very many lives during his short 26 years. 

David Lord was a bright young man whom I had the pleasure of working with through many years of theatrical productions – an amazing comedian and actor with tremendous depth. But, some of our favorite memories of David were not made on the stage – though they are plentiful – but in the wilds of Southern New Jersey Pinelands and marshes and waterways where he spent long hours studying nature – specifically birds and butterflies. He taught me how to listen and observe at a reflective level that made biblical truth and the character of God come alive in my spirit in fresh ways, with great delight. My husband and I began to take more time on our walks to listen to the birds and be more curious about the wonders of nature beyond a surface fascination.

[Tweet “There are glories to mine . . . should we STOP – and take the time.”]

I encouraged David to start a blog during the first year I was blogging in 2011. He had so much to write about and with a little prodding, he did so. Though not many, the posts he wrote over the past three years are rich. I wrote the following introductory post to introduce him to Blogland, and am re-posting it here. It details a few adventures we’ve shared on nature paths and river tours. One day spent with David as a guide in the wild was so infilling, it felt like a week’s vacation of renewal.

May his legacy increase for all the good things and beauty he shared along the way . . .

I love to wonder as I wander through Creations’ home decor, drinking in the Glory of God in those things He hath wrought.  The Lord is our First Homemaker and His household appointments inspire me, refreshing me spirit, soul, and body, that I might learn from the examples He displays through the craft of Creation.

[Tweet “To tour God’s vast household, sometimes a good guide is required.”]

Enter, David.

He had me in stitches the first time I saw him onstage.  He was playing the title role in The Importance of Being Earnest during his sophomore year of high school.  I knew he would be a great asset to my family friendly old-fashioned melodrama performing troupe and offered him a spot.  He was a featured performer and audience favorite in many of my productions over the past six years, pictured above as Tweeter Maloney, the eccentric owner of a dry saloon, obsessed with the desert loon, in the wild west melodrama The Ballad of Maggie Maloney.   I’ve had the pleasure of watching him grow into a fine young man. 

If you saw him performing onstage in one of my melodramas, you wouldn’t be able to keep a dry eye for laughing – he is a brilliant comedian.  But, his gift for comedic timing and pratfalls is just a veneer for a serious young man with a passion for God’s creation in nature.  Uniquely gifted with the powers of observation and retention of information, David has grown into a mature young man – the go-to-guide for getting the most out of birding tours and nature walks in our little neck of South Jersey marsh and Pinelands.

He treated me to what I often refer to as “my favorite day” a couple years ago when he secured for my husband and me a “butterfly tour” of Cape May during the annual monarch migration at the southern most tip of New Jersey.  A world class butterfly expert was conducting the tours near the marsh among the various butterfly gardens attracting this amazing creature.  After seeing the wonder of butterflies and dragonflies of many varieties – assisted by David who expertly named every one and explained their peculiar characteristics – we took a nature walk through the marsh discovering various species of birds that, to my layman’s eyes, I would never have seen.

We’ve enjoyed boat tours with him as guide pointing out the distinctions between falcons, osprey, vultures, and eagles soaring overhead in sapphire blue skies – not to mention the host of other bird life on any given shoreline flitting and frolicking about blue water currents.  I never noticed the variety before.

Our most recent boat tour was this past April when we went on an eagle watch and had the privilege of seeing four nesting pairs and their young.  My camera could scarce capture the glory of seeing such magnificent creatures in person.  I really need to upgrade!

Here’s one of David’s shots of a soaring osprey sighted on his recent New England birding trip.  Oh!   To soar with osprey wings be they blue or stormy skies!  See Isaiah 40:31.

I was so glad he stepped out this spring and started his own blog.  He’s titled it I Wonder as I Wander.  And, what inspirational thoughts he wonders about!  I love how he is able to draw out Biblical truths God has planted within the DNA of all creation.  His physical ears and eyes are so finely tuned to the natural world, while his spiritual ears and eyes translate those things he sees and hears into biblical principals speaking Christ.

“He existed in the beginning with God.  God created everything through Him, and nothing was created except through Him.  The Word gave life to everything that was created, and His life brought light to everyone.”
  John 1:2-4
This past Saturday was the annual Bay Days on the marsh – just a twenty minute drive from our home.  What a wonderland of landscape and wildlife exists there – in such contrast to my backyard suburbia.  Not that my backyard isn’t teaming with life – it is.  David’s been helping me to identify some of the birds our wildflower garden is attracting.  
We walked out to the end of a long dock into the middle of the marsh.  He surveyed the scene and sighed, his voice trailing off in reverie . . .
[Tweet “”I really love it out here . . .” “]
I saw my first purple martin up close and personal that day.  Too bad I couldn’t get the camera out fast enough.  Sorry.

David’s been blogging about different birds and other adventures discovered in God’s creation and I’ve been blessed by his ruminations at I WONDER AS I WANDER.  Click on this link, I bet you’ll be blessed, too.  I hope you’ll visit him there and become a follower.  He’ll be spending a semester in York, England this fall with many new species of birds and natural wonders to wander through and blog about.  I’m looking forward to learning more about them – and the Bible lessons they personify.

I made this little thank you poster for him after our eagle adventure.  Hope you enjoyed meeting him.

Originally posted Spring, 2011.

Farewell, my friend . . .

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Sharing Eulogy for a Friend – Farewell David this week with:

Judith at Whole Hearted Wednesdays

 Tell His Story with Jennifer Dukes Lee

A Little R&R Wednesdays

 Lyli at Thought Provoking Thursdays at 3D Lessons 4Life

Hope in Every Season Homemaking Party

 Laura on Faith Filled Friday at Missional Women

 Essential Things Friday Devotions

 Fellowship Fridays at Christian Mommy Blogger

 Charlotte at Spiritual Sundays

My Fresh Brewed Life with Barbie – Weekend Brew

Janis with Sunday Stillness

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2014 Kathryn Ross

About Miss Kathy

"I teach families how to restore their God-given authority as the primary educator in their child’s life through the experience of reading together as a family. Learn how to use literature to create teachable moments, build strong minds, and bind loving hearts."

Kathryn Ross, writer, speaker, and dramatist, ignites a love of literature and learning to equip young and old towards developing a Family Literacy Lifestyle—reading together, learning together, loving together. Her works challenge families to deepen their literacy skills and grow into the greater things God has purposed for them. She’s taught in Christian and homeschool circles, trained in the Principle Approach® through the Foundation for American Christian Education. Miss Kathy owns Pageant Wagon Publishing, producing homeschool enrichment materials, devotional works, study guides, and theatrical dramas for church, school, and community production. She podcasts at TheWritersReverie.com and blogs at PageantWagonPublishing.com.

Comments

  1. What a wonderful tribute to your sweet friend. Hugs and blessings, Cindy

  2. A beautiful eulogy and wonderful tribute to a fine young man. I feel like I know him after reading this post because you have captured his character so well. Thanks for sharing, Kathryn. 🙂 x

  3. I love all things wildlife and nature.
    Your friend sounds like the go to guy for such informative thoughts.
    I would like to have met your friend.
    I am sorry for the loss of such an intriguing man.

    Blessings

  4. Very sweet. What a wonderful way to share the story of our Creator. I wish more people had keen eyes and ears like he did!

  5. Beautiful tribute to your friend! I am so sorry for your loss, but smiling with you at the memories. Thank you for sharing.

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