In loving memory of Lynn Shepard Hollinger

I have never experienced death before.  Not this close before.

Even to write these words now, the message doesn’t click in my head, definitely not in my heart.  Today, I received the call, the call that I have always dreaded.  A call in which the only response I could give was, “What?  But, Dad….”  Sinking to the floor with the weight of my burdened heart, I realized “that” day had come, and it came today.  Today, my sweet PawPaw passed away.


Right now, the sorority house where I live is bumbling about with the flow of girls running here and there trying to find the perfect pair of shoes to match their dresses for fraternity formals tonight.   I sit here though, in my bed beneath a sky of Christmas lights, and I am trying to figure out where I will go from here.  How do you cope?  How do you find closure when a letter that you wrote to him sits on your desk, waiting to be stamped and mailed home?  All I can think about is that I should have written more.  I should have called more.  I should have….this and that… I should have done more than I did.


I was going to play my guitar and sing for him at Christmas in a few weeks.


But, God.  God is always good.  There is comfort in His arms, and I am finding the truth in the verse that I was going to blog about last night: John 16:33.  Isn’t God’s timing a miracle itself?

“I have said these things so that in Me, you may have peace.

In this world, you will have tribulation.

But take heart;

I have overcome the world!”

Jesus Christ has overcome every struggle that we have ever had and will ever have in the future.  He has overcome addiction, eating disorders, painful relationships with others, and He has even overcome death.  I can hear Him now telling me, “Sissy, peace is found in Me, in My arms.  I have overcome the world, and through your faith in Me, you too will overcome the world through me (1 John 5:4).”

Today, I leave you with one of the passages that is giving me comfort…. Revelation 21:3-5

“And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying,

“Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man.  He will dwell with them, and

they will be his people, and

God Himself will be with them as their God.

He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and

death shall be no more,

neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore,

for the former things have passed away.

And he who was seated on the throne said,

“Behold, I am making all things new.”


6 thoughts on “In loving memory of Lynn Shepard Hollinger

  1. Sarah, I pray the peace of God fill your heart and mind, and the Holy Spirit, the Comforter, comfort you and all your family in this time. 2 Co. 1:5. Standing with you in prayer. -Koffi.

    • Thank you so much, Koffi, for your thoughts and prayers! I have missed seeing you around, but the memory of your sweet hugs and smiles comforted me so much when I read your comment. Thank you so much for that verse 🙂

  2. Sarah, I’m so sorry to hear about your loss today. I lost my dad a few months ago, and I still can’t believe he’s gone. I just never imagined living in a world without him, so I definitely know your pain. I’ll be praying for you and your family.


    • E, I am so sorry to hear of your loss, too. This is one of the verses that they read at his graveside service… 2 Corinthians 5:6-9
      Thank you so much for your note, and I will definitely be praying for you and your family as you cope with his passing.

  3. Sarah,

    I will see you tomorrow in Meadville. Can’t wait to give you a big hug. Just remember…. as I know that you already KNOW this… while there is physical and mental sadness here… there is so much joy for Paw Paw right now. The people he is getting to see that have been waiting for years! His mom and dad, friends etc…. and to know that he is in a place of incredible peace and an excellence impossible to comprehend hopefully will help you, Brad, your dad… your mom and everyone else involved. Just know that he is elated at where he is. Remember him for all of the great things he stood for and did. His legacy will live long. Love you, Uncle Mike

    • Uncle Mike, it was such a wonderful surprise to see you at the funeral, and thank you so much for coming. Seeing you and Aunt Cindy there brought so much joy to my heart, especially to mom’s. I love you, and thank you again for coming and for sharing your words of comfort. Love you too! -Sarah

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