I haven’t forgotten you, even though it’s been some time now since I’ve seen your face, touched your hand, heard your voice. You are with me all the time.
I used to think you left me. I know better now. You come to me. Sometimes in fleeting moments I feel your presence close by. But I still miss you. And nothing — no person, no joy, no accomplishment, no distraction, not even God — can fill the gaping hole your absence has left in my life.
But mixed together with all my sadness, there is a great joy for having known you. I want to thank you for the time we shared, for the love you gave, for the wisdom you spread.
Thank you for the magnificent moments and for the ordinary ones too. There was beauty in our simplicity. Holiness in our unspectacular days. And I will carry the lessons you taught me always.
Your life has ended, but your light can never be extinguished. It continues to shine upon me even on the darkest nights and illuminates my way.
I light this candle in your honor and in your memory. May God bless you as you have blessed me with love, with grace and with peace. Amen.
From “Talking to God” (Knopf, 2002). Reprinted with permission.