Sunday, April 3, 2011

In Loving Memory of AJ Rooks

I haven't posted in quite sometime. A lot of you know why, but a lot of you don't. I won't go into too much detail, but on Saturday, March 19, 2011, we lost our very close friend, Anthony Jordon Rooks very unexpectedly. We have had so many thoughts and emotions, too many to write on a blog and that I have saved personally. I have never felt this way. ever. My heart hurts for my dear friend Jenna...AJ's beautiful wife of 11 months. My heart hurts for AJ's parents, brother, and sister. My heart hurts for Kev and I losing such an amazing man as a friend. My heart hurts knowing that this isn't the last time I'll feel this way in my lifetime. Although my heart hurts, I can't help but feel at peace because I know that I am not the only one who has felt this pain. My Savior has felt every heartache, every pain, every weakness, every misfortune that I have felt...and still...he has felt more. He has felt was His choice. It needed to be done. He came forward, for me. How grateful I am for my Savior. For sacrificing all so that we may see AJ again. He sacrificed all so that we may find peace and comfort through our despair. I love My Savior so much. I love knowing that AJ is happy. I love knowing that AJ is teaching about this incredible Gospel of Jesus Christ. I love knowing that this is what this life is all about. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is PERFECT. This last weekend was general conference...2 weeks since the passing of AJ. I know these men are called of God and are very inspired. Each conference that I have listened, I have always left with a feeling of peace. A feeling of inspiration to BE better and to DO better. This weekend in particular really hit me hard and I felt a more firm conviction of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I felt a more surety that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is Perfect and that it is Simple. There are challenges and trials, but with these come peace, humility and ultimate joy. There were so many amazing talks by these inspired men and I would highly recommend reading or watching them on LDS.ORG.

Kev and I were with AJ and Jenna almost everyday for months since moving to Salt Lake. We learned so much from both of them and continue to gain knowledge of what this life is truely about. I am so grateful for the frienship we had with AJ and I know that we will see him again and continue to be friends through the eternities. I believe Kev and I were friends with AJ and Jenna before this life. We knew what was going to happen. Life can be hard. Life can be challenging. But we can still have joy. We can still have peace and comfort. I absolutely know this to be true. It puts a lot of things in perspective of relationships. I hope that when I leave this life that the people I leave behind know that I was honest and know that I tried my best to be like Christ. Being upset over small things (or even big things)....does it REALLY matter?! AJ's funeral was amazing, but one thing continues to hit me. AJ's brother in law said, "Yes, AJ had his flaws, but it's amazing that we don't care about that. We don't reflect on that." Shouldn't that be how this life is too?

"No pain that we suffer, no trial that we experience is wasted. It ministers to our education, to the development of such qualities as patience, faith, fortitude and humility. It is through sorrow and suffering, toil and tribulation that we gain the education that we come here to acquire."
There is a Benefit account that has been set up for Jenna for funeral expenses and anything else she needs help to get back on her feet. I know that we are all in different financial situations, but we would appreciate if anyone reading this that feels incline to help to go to any Wells Fargo and donate to the Anthony Jordon Rooks benefit account... $5 can really go a long way. Until we meet again, AJ. We'll do all we can to take care of your beautiful wife and family.


Hope said...

I know it's true, too. Give Jenna a hug from someone she doesn't know.

Jessica said...

This post was done so well. Im so sorry for your loss and for everyone else who knew him. This post hit me hard even though i've never ever met him, just so unfortunate. one of those things that kind of hit me in the gut and made me have a 'i will not take life for granted'moment. i agree with what you said in your post, you have such a great testimony and i'm glad you feel the comfort in that at this time. i agree with the first girl who commented. I hope Jenna knows that people (who dodn't even know her) are praying for and thinking about her.

Rick and Kori said...

Wow Jess I am so sorry that you guys have been going through this. I can't even imagine. My heart goes out to his wife. Your testimony was so beautiful and has definitly strengthened mine. Thank you so much for sharing your strong faith!