The last couple of days have been filled with great sadness. My beautiful cousin passed away last week and this weekend we laid her to rest in a dignified ceremony. As the different speakers came to share insights about her life, one after the other they echoed similar sentiments about how she lived her life to the ultimate fullest. It was as if she knew her time would be limited. Her beauty was an absolute gift. I always used to say to some people when they would make comments and offer to rate who in their opinions was the most beautiful women in the country. And I remember I would say ‘wait until you meet my cousin’. She is/was undoubtedly maybe in the top 5 of the most beautiful women in the world. And trust me I’m not exaggerating; other people can confirm this statement. When she entered a room or any gathering you couldn’t help but notice her, it was like she became the very light of that space….

I think more than anything, my cousin’s passing really shocked the whole world because her death was so sudden. There was no warning in a sense that she was not sick, in fact she was young and so full of life. Her death remains a mystery that I have chosen to make peace with.

She has been on my mind from the first time I heard she is gone and I know it sounds silly but I keep thinking this is one big dream and we will all wake up from it soon. It’s truly unbelievable, it just does not make any sense…

I know many people who have lost loved ones will probably relate to the mixed emotions one encounters of confusion, pain, anger etc…

In my solitude, I kept asking the Lord, ‘why her?’ ‘why did she have to die so suddenly?’ ‘why God?’ and for an entire week those questions kept consistent in my mind…

I started panicking and having a sense of fear of what would happen if I suddenly lost the people I love the most…in my mind I think I will not be able to survive. On Monday God spoke to me and I heard in my heart, “remember the words TD Jakes spoke at Whitney Houston’s funeral?” Immediately I went on to listen to the recording again and I love the words TD Jakes echoed and he said, “In moments like this it feels like death has won but the Bible says Love is stronger than death…”

And he goes on to make examples of great individuals who did great and extraordinary things but who eventually died. But his rendition was, death is just a transition from this life to the next. Though we may lose our loved ones outwardly, we never lose them inwardly. They will be a part of us if we keep their memories of the amazing times we had with them alive…they are the very image of love and God is love. Love can never die…so we can always live with the conviction that though it may seem like death has won…it can never win because Love is stronger and Love has conquered death. These words gave me strength to make peace with my cousin’s passing. This is the truth I choose to believe and I choose to see life and death through the lens of LOVE.

*This article is dedicated to all our loved ones who have passed on. They will forever remain in our hearts…*

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