In January of 2016 I was being prompted to write a blog.
I wasn’t sure what a blog was, nor how to go about writing one. Shortly after this prompting, our son Joel and daughter Calli were visiting me. Writing a blog came up during our visit. My wife Lorna had passed away eighteen months earlier in August of 2014.
To our family, it was apparent from day one, that Lorna wasn’t “dead”. The purpose of the blog would be to share some of the experiences we had after Lorna was gone. I was quite reluctant—I really had no interest in writing a blog or anything else for that matter.
Joel said he could handle the nuts and bolts of getting it online, all I would have to do is write it. He then said something about my future that convinced me to at least make an attempt.
Fast forward a few days. I had a colonoscopy scheduled. For those of you that have had that pleasant experience, you know about the afternoon and evening before. So, being restricted to the house, I wrote the first blog post. Truth be told, I wasn’t the one that wrote it—I was merely the scribe. I finished about 8pm on a Wednesday evening, titled it After They Are Gone: When Heaven Calls a Loved one Home, What About Us? and sent it off to Joel via email.
Joel then purchased the web site AfterTheyAreGone.com, published the blog on Wednesday evening, and then shared the blog post to his Facebook friends before going to bed. It was about 10pm.
As the blog administrator Joel can check the traffic the site is receiving. When he woke up the next morning he checked the site data and found over 100 people on the site. Initially he thought something was wrong with the analytics, but as the day progressed nothing was wrong.
Within 24 hours the blog post had been read in all fifty states and almost one hundred countries by more than fifty six thousand people. By the end of the first week that number had grown too over one hundred thirty thousand.
Today, April 2021 it has received almost a quarter of a million unique visits, with three hundred forty thousand page views. It has been obvious from day one that the blog was heaven directed.
Now, let’s skip ahead a few years. I was now being prompted to write a book. I did not want to write a book.
One morning just as I was waking up, I said out loud to myself; “Okay! I’ll write the book!” It startled me when I heard what I said. Where did that come from?
A rhetorical question. I knew where it had come from. I was being chastened/counseled from the other side of the veil prior to waking up. I was being chastened for dragging my feet, and counseled to get the book done. Other than knowing it occurred, I have no recollection of the pre-waking discussion. It must have been persuasive.
Subsequently, I was reminded of a sentence in my Patriarchal Blessing; “.…you will be a source of comfort and strength to many people”.
Over the next several months I wrote, re-wrote, shuffled, edited, shared, and ultimately finished writing “the book”. It’s not long, just a couple of hours to read.
My sincere thanks for all those that have participated in getting this book written. It has been a collaborative effort by many. Especially son Joel who has spent countless hours editing and formatting the book to be easily shared and read online.
And, a grateful heart to our family, Scott, Kurt, Joel, Calli and Katie for their willingness to believe.
– Craig Jenkins, 2021