Dedication to Victoria Lynn Sauer

I was 12 years old when my life changed significantly. Prior to that, I don’t remember much. Like most 12 year olds my life was good.  My cousin Victoria and I were in our first year at public Jr. High.  Along with her sister Emily, we were going to begin our journey of changing the world.  We had hope, high hopes, and we knew we had been called to public school, and out of private school for a reason. We were not scared though, we had each other and we knew that together, we could make a difference.  We wanted to share Jesus to the world, well at least our world. Funny now looking back and thinking that at such a young age, we could have felt such a strong calling. But we did.

The year before, when I was 11, my mom had helped me write a mission statement. It had come significantly out of the dreams and visions that were stirred up in time spent with Victoria and Emily. Time we spent dreaming of changing the world. The desire of our heart was to help people.

To bring hope to the hopeless was my mission.  Little did I realize at the time the power of those words and how I would be challenged at such a young age to lose the very thing I held so dear…..hope.

Then it happened.  My partner in world evangelism, my side kick, my best friend, was gone. Victoria Lynn Sauer went to heaven and I was here.

I heard someone say once that our lives are marked by significant defining events. Events that when you look back, they stand out as turning points. This was the first of such events that I can remember. It became the demarcation of my life to this point. Everything after this event required a significant choice. I could have blamed everything after that on God. I lost my best friend, and at 12 there seemed to be no recovery from that. Everything that had brought me joy, even singing and dance (which were my life) brought more pain filled memories than I thought I could bear.

Yes, I had a choice. I wanted to close up, hide and never come out. The despair I felt was overwhelming. But something held on to me. Something would not let me go to that dark place to hide. The hope that God had planted in me, Victoria and Emily was still there. I knew that I could not hide away the hope and destiny that sparked us to such dreams. It was so strong in us that even after she was gone, her spark lived on in me. I had to keep that dream alive. So I sing…. and I dance ….and even today with every note and every challenging step I am reminded of the hope that God redeemed then, and the promise of that hope in the future.

I will spare you all the details of the ups and downs, the cloudy days and the rain, and believe me….. There was rain. But through his unforced rhythm of grace,  God never let me go. He gave me strength to endure; he nurtured the dreams and desires of three little girls, even with only two left here to carry them out. It has been a wild, wonderful journey.  A journey that has brought redeemed hope. A journey that brought new friends and new dreams, that have coupled with the dreams and hopes of the past.

So this album, this night, is dedicated first to God because He is my redeeming hope; and secondly, to Victoria Lynne Sauer. Her life lives on in our music. A life well lived a life worth remembering.

If you hear one thing in this album, I hope you hear a message of Redeeming Hope. I pray that whatever rain you may be lost in, the rain of doubt, the rain of fear, the rain of loneliness, or even the rain of hopelessness, that you will find redeeming hope through His unforced rhythm of grace. He will never let you go…..

Tabitha Summers | Redeeming Hope
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