"Leslie Miranda Wood, 39, of Murphy, TX completed her life’s heart song on Thursday, March 26, 2015...Miranda is busy preparing a special heavenly encore that not only can, but must be heard live. She eagerly awaits each of your arrivals upon successful completion of your own heart song...Open your heart, let it show through your life, and sing away…"
Today I laid to rest a old and very dear friend of mine, Miranda Wood. As you can see she passed, what some might say, way too young. She died in her sleep on Thursday night at home in her bed. No major medical issues, no reason, she was just gone. For so many of us this is the ideal "way to go" but many of us wish for it to happen when we are old and gray and "lived our lives". She also left behind a husband and two young kids, Austin age 10 and Ashtyn age 8.
When this type of tragedy strikes we want to turn back the wheel of time and say "Whoa! God, wait a minute! She still had so much to live for! She still had so much life to live!"
But I assure you, she lived her life. So much so that as you can see in the above picture, the church was packed out, on the bottom floor and in the balcony. The visitation the night before was a full house with people waiting to go inside and greet the family.
What kind of person makes such an impact? A person that is in love with Jesus and shows it by attitude and acts of service. A person that lives sacrificially and is the same person you see in public that she is behind closed doors.
I used to attend church with Miranda and although we are almost a decade apart she was still able to make a profound impact on my life. Between the ages of 16 and 20 years old I was one of the few that was privileged to sing and harmonize with this very talented lady in choirs and worship teams on Sunday mornings at Sachse Assembly of God. I was shy, young and still building my confidence on stage. Miranda was a vocal mentor that I looked up to. She never knew it, unfortunately, because I never told her. There were few people in my life during that time that made me go, I wanna be like that when I grow up. To sing boldly and with passion and be able to minister to people through song, and she was one of them.
Today I help co-lead worship at my church, First at Firewheel, in Garland, TX and carry apart of her spirit with me. I am honored to feel that I am a small part of the legacy she left, by inspiring me to sing. She never looked down upon me because of my age but encouraged me to sing loud and sing out. As we grew a bit older and we got married and had kids our friendship grew. Unfortunately, time and circumstances made it difficult to keep touch and we resorted to usual "facebook friend" status.
When I did see her a handful times over the years we opened up, talked, laughed, prayed and cried with each other as if no time had passed between us at all. She was that kind of person.
So yes, she deserves to have a blog completely devoted to her, her memory and her legacy. Considering the name of my blog is "My Heart's Song" I felt it could not be more appropriate. Considering I blog and write, one of my favorite gifts of ministry is leading people into the throneroom with worship. This is something Miranda did every time she got on stage. As our old pastor, Rick Dubose, explained today at her funeral, she, like Paul and Silas, broke through to heaven and in the process, doors opened up and chains fell off, even for those who heard.
I hope to be an inspiration to others to lead a life that leads people to Jesus, just like Miranda! See you on the other side, girl. In the meantime, SING IT!