On May 31st 2011 one of my very dearest friends, Sheri La Mar went to be with Jesus. It was a very rainy May for those of us left behind but for Sheri the Son will forever be shining and for that I am happy. I want to thank Brett La Mar for the privilege to speak at Sheri’s funeral. Here is what I said:
Sheri and I met in college. We were on the same floor. The thing that initially connected us was that we found out we had been attending the same retreats called: Sought Out. These camps were unique in that the whole weekend was spent falling in love with Jesus and Him touching our hearts. We shared this experience. We figured we had been at the same camp at the same time, never meeting.
I have memories with Sheri of Cinnabon runs after a long evening of studying. I realize now that those Cinnabon night led to the cinabuns that I have to this day, “Thanks a lot Sheri.”
Sheri was such a good soul. I can remember hanging out in my dorm room with a few girls and a boy kept buzzing our room so that he could see my roommate, Beth. Beth would say, “Sheri go tell him I’m not here,” and Sheri would respond, “ok, but you need to leave the room so I can say that in truth.” That was Sheri.
As each of you know and have your own stories, Sheri was a caretaker. I can remember sleepless nights when my homesickness left me feeling so lonely. I would go to Sheri’s room and my sister in Christ would scoot over and say, “Crawl on in Shell” (that was her nickname for me), just so I could get a few winks before the morning.
I can remember Sheri and I contemplating our futures and praying that God would direct our paths. At one point Sheri thought she would possibly be a missionary. One day she came to me and said that she had determined one thing for sure for the direction of her life,”that I am to bloom where I’m planted.” This was truly Sheri’s life. Whether she was teaching, mothering, with her family or friends, or simply at the grocery store, Sheri bloomed where she was planted. Sheri sent out an amazing fragrance and touched whoever she was with at the moment. I thought it was so appropriate that there will be a flower garden in her honor that will remind each of us to bloom where we’re planted.
My most recent encounter with Sheri’s tenderness was when I had to do what felt like one of the hardest things. I had to tell my daughters that we were moving from their home of ten years. I felt overwhelmed and I can remember calling Sheri. I’m not even sure of her exact words but the spirit of the conversation was that it was all gonna be OK, that it was gonna be better than OK, it was gonna be good.
You know the thing is my friend Sheri isn’t here to call, in my deep sadness. But I know Sheri. And I know what she is saying to me. I know what she is probably saying to each of us, “It’s all gonna be ok, it’s gonna be better than OK, it’s gonna be good.” And I say, “OK, friend. I love you.”