Thursday, June 2, 2016

Copy That...

I have always found that writing is when I feel the closest to God.  Sharing my thoughts and feelings often makes me feel wrapped up in his love.  I feel that today more than ever I need to be wrapped up in his love.

Yesterday a very good friend on mine, Bill Zeiss, peacefully passed away from the after affects of an accident.  Bill was an amazing man with a loving servant's heart. He was loving, colorful, and full of life but in a very silent, mellow, but passionate way.  He was a Christ centered man who was very mission oriented.  He was the center of almost all of the food related ministries of the church.  He also was the go to guy for anything that was sound related . Everything that we did here at church Bill had a hand in.  I would always run into him here working on something. 

I feel that he best thing for me to do is to share a few of the most impactful moments that Bill Zeiss has had on my life.

Bill and Tracy have an amazing daughter named Sophie.  She is a beautiful, loving, Christ centered leader in our youth group.  I have been blessed to have Sophie in youth group since she was in 6th grade.  After a couple of years in the youth group Bill popped into my office one day and sat down on the couch.  He told me that he just wanted to stop by and thank me for all the work that I did with the youth of St. Mark's.  He told me that he was so grateful that Sophie had someone to come to if she needed another adult. He said that he was just so thankful for not only me being there for Sophie but for me being a great friend to him too.

My wife Coleen and I got married last October in Blacksburg, Va.  During the reception Bill came up to me and gave me a huge hug, kissed me on the cheek and told me how happy he was for me.  He told me how excited he was and how Coleen and I were perfect for each other. I know that he did the same thing to Coleen. He was so excited for us and we felt so blessed that he and Tracy were there.

I am an avid model railroader and I just recently put up a train layout at the house.  Bill told me a couple of times about these train cars he had kept from a shoot he did.  He told me that one day he was going to put up a layout. A couple of weeks ago Bill walked into my office and told me that he wanted me to have the train cars.  He said he would never put together a layout but he knew I would enjoy them and he wanted me to have them.

The Durham Bulls have some games on their schedule that they play at 11 am.  Wes always organizes a group we call the "day gamers" to go to the games.  Coleen would always ask me who is going and I would say, Wes, Ted, myself, and Billy Z.  Billy and I loved to talk baseball.  He would either be sitting next to me scoring the game or sitting with a big plate of nachos. I of course would have a hotdog or two and we would sit for three hours and talk baseball.

Coleen and I didn't go on our Honeymoon until May of this year.  The day before we were supposed to leave Bill came into my office and handed me an envelope.  He said they had taken up a love offering for us for our trip.  He game me a huge hug and told me to have fun and that he "hoped it would go big."

The last time I saw Bill we were having a covenant group breakfast at Briggs restaurant.  Pete was telling us all how his wife Emily had been talking to the Grandparents of one of our youth and how they had told her that our youth group is the best thing that has ever happened to their grandson and that they didn't know where he would be without it.  Bill didn't say anything, he just reached his fist across the table and gave me a fist bump. I knew immediately he was saying that's what I'm talking about.

There were two things that Bill always said to me.  Whenever we were about to have an event and I would be telling him about it, he would always end our conversation with "I hope it goes big."

Whenever I would ask for his help with something sound or food related after I would get done telling him what I needed, he would always say "copy that!" 

I am really going to miss Bill. He was an amazing man with a servant's heart, a loving spirit, and a love of life.  He was an amazing father, a devoted and loving husband, and the best friend that any of us could of asked for. 

He was always looking to catch that next wave of life so that he could ride it and see where it led him.  There wasn't a restaurant in the world he wouldn't try but at the same time he would of never let another person go hungry if he could help it. 

Thank you Bill for everything and all the impacts you have had on my life.  I will never forget the amazing man you were and the beautiful soul you had that filled all of our lives.  I know what you would say to us about what we are supposed to do now.  You would say "I hope it goes big."

So I say "Copy that..."

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