Good Out of Evil

WANA: We may not have it all together, but together we have it all.

Last week I posted a blog about the death of my cousin Carol Eiland. Today, I want to share, as Paul Harvey would say, the rest of the story. It starts with my maternal grandmother, whom we called Mimi, my mother, and her brother and sister, Uncle George and Auntie Mac.


Auntie Mac, Mother, Mimi, Uncle George

Mother had four of us, and Uncle George and Auntie Mac each had three. The three of them apparently made a pact before most of us were born that they would do whatever it took to give all of us a love for and relationship with our cousins. All three families would get together for Christmas and Easter each year, and every summer they would ship us kids back and forth between Fort Worth, where we lived, and Lamesa, where my uncle and aunt lived.

It worked. We all grew up with strong bonds among us and great love for one another. Geography has scattered some of us cousins and our kids and grandkids, so some of us don’t get together often, but the bonds of love are still there.

When Carol, my Uncle George’s daughter-in-law (okay, ex – but we’re not into ex much) died it was a terrible thing for all of us. She was so young and healthy we were all in shock. Her kids were devastated, and the rest of us felt pain, too.

Enter God. In case anyone isn’t aware, He’s very much into bringing good out of bad. This was no exception.

We first cousins had all talked from time to time about the fact that our kids and grandkids didn’t have the sort of family ties we had. None of the big holiday gatherings like we enjoyed. A lot of our grandkids don’t even know one another, and our kids aren’t close like we were.

It became obvious as we gathered for the visitation and the funeral and such that our kids and grandkids recognized this and missed the relationships. Several of us lamented it and said that we should start getting together now and then without having a funeral to go to.

Then my dear cousin June put some feet to the wish. She, with the cooperation of her sister, who lives near her, invited 60 or 70 of us to descend on her house for a family reunion next Thanksgiving. As she mentioned it to different people gathered there, she received a 100% positive response. I’m sure there will be a few who can’t be there for one reason or another, but most will. This will be the first time in my memory that this bunch, which stretches all the way across Texas and over to Georgia, has gathered in one place without a funeral drawing us there.

We’ll all enjoy the visiting, and several—maybe many—of these people need and should receive real ministry from this gathering. Without Carol’s death, this would not have come about. God has indeed taken something bad and made something very good out of it. This is very much a part of how He works.


clip_image003David N. Walker is a Christian father and grandfather, a grounded pilot and a near-scratch golfer who had to give up the game because of shoulder problems. A graduate of Duke University, he spent 42 years as a health insurance agent. Most of that career was spent in Texas, but for a few years he traveled many other states. He started writing about 20 years ago, and has six unpublished novels to use as primers on how NOT to write fiction. Since his retirement from insurance a few years ago, he has devoted his time to helping Kristen Lamb start Warrior Writers’ Boot Camp and trying to learn to write a successful novel himself.


About David N. Walker

David N. Walker is a Christian husband, father and grandfather, a grounded pilot and a near-scratch golfer who had to give up the game because of shoulder problems. A graduate of Duke University, he spent 42 years in the health insurance industry, during which time he traveled much of the United States. He started writing about 20 years ago and has been a member and leader in several writers' groups. Christianity 101: The Simplified Christian Life, the devotional Heaven Sent and the novella series, Fancy, are now available in paperback and in Kindle and Nook formats, as well as through Smashwords and Kobo. See information about both of these by clicking "Books" above.
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14 Responses to Good Out of Evil

  1. hawleywood40 says:

    I just read your post about Carol as well – she sounds like such a wonderful woman and my sympathies are with you and your family. I am glad that such a good thing is coming out of this for all of you. I think God helps us see just how important family ties and time together are during times of loss. I know that my family has been much better at keeping in touch since my grandfather’s passing, and some of my relatives who really don’t travel much are planning to come visit us and spend some time in Baltimore later this spring.


  2. Thank you for this David. What a beautiful piece. I am a big family person and it breaks my heart that half my family is so scattered, so good for you for making that effort within your family to bind together. It’s so important. Because once we’re gone, we’re gone.


  3. I always hear how “the Lord works in mysterious ways”.. cliche I know.. but it is so true. It is always wonderful when something positive comes from something sad.


  4. Catherine Johnson says:

    Sorry to hear about your cousin, David. This is a beautiful post.


  5. Thanks for sharing that. I remember as a kid, every night, praying for every uncle, aunt, and cousin, and my mother had eleven siblings, so there were lots of cousins. I rarely get to see them, but we have a bond regardless.


  6. Barb Estinson says:

    Wow …. beautiful post, David. I could feel the power of love and connection as I read it. I would love to hear more about the visits with various people gathered for Carol’s service. I was there in heart and spirit, if not in body.


  7. Marcia says:

    Inspirational story, David. It’s not uncommon for families to drift…times change and people move away. Sometimes the timing is perfect for folks to realize what they’ve been missing, like your family did. What a generous soul your cousin, June, is to share her home with so many relatives. It will be a truly memorable holiday for all of you, no matter how many attend. 🙂


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