For Bridger

My Humble Thoughts On the Passing of My Dear Cousin Bridger Baxter

Over the past months, I've been writing my thoughts and learnings down in this adventure blog. Tonight I won't recap a journey to the top of a mountain. I will talk about the real mountains of life. The mountains and trials of life that are so big they take your breathe away, cause you to pause, and dig deep to find a way to conquer them. 

On Wed, October 26, 2016, we lost Bridger Baxter—my cousin, a son, a brother, an uncle, and a child of God. It's always hard when you get news like this. It stops you in your tracks. It makes you pause and really think.

Tonight I want to write a few words that I have felt over the past few days to celebrate the life of my cousin, Bridger Baxter. 

When I was little my family would travel to Idaho to visit Bridger and the rest of the Baxters—my cousins. The Baxters have always lived in such a beautiful part of the world with big open farm land in Jerome, Idaho. Each time we visit, we would go on adventures and explore. Bridger and Jacob Baxter took me on some of my first real adventures without parents.

One of my cherished memories of Bridger was when we would go explore the Lava caves. They were rough, deep, and dark. Bridger would be the first one to lead the way into the cave. He was fearless. He also had a quiet confidence about him and always looked for ways to help by showing us where to go. He urged us along the way. Then once we had conquered our fears and conquered the cave he would lead us back out of the cave into the afternoon light. He was an adventurer and helped me to discover that passion also. I also remember spending hours and hours late into the night laughing at jokes and stories with Bridger and Jacob.

As I have thought about him over the past days—I have found myself pointing to the heavens and letting him know I will miss him. That I know one day I will see him again.

During this difficult time, I'm comforted by the words of the Hymn, Be Still My Soul

1. Be still, my soul: The Lord is on thy side; With patience bear thy cross of grief or pain. Leave to thy God to order and provide; In ev'ry change he faithful will remain. Be still, my soul: Thy best, thy heav'nly Friend. Thru thorny ways leads to a joyful end.

2. Be still, my soul: Thy God doth undertake. To guide the future as he has the past. Thy hope, thy confidence let nothing shake; All now mysterious shall be bright at last. Be still, my soul: The waves and winds still know. His voice who ruled them while he dwelt below.

3. Be still, my soul: The hour is hast'ning on. When we shall be forever with the Lord, When disappointment, grief, and fear are gone, Sorrow forgot, love's purest joys restored. Be still, my soul: When change and tears are past, All safe and blessed we shall meet at last.

Below is a video of David Archuleta singing this song. If you take a few minutes and listen it will provide a message of hope during this difficult time. It has helped me. 

Bridger you will be missed and I know that we'll meet again. Until that time—we celebrate your great life here on earth. Love you cuz. Until we meet again!