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I started my day yesterday reading this:

PALMER Mark K. Palmer, age 31, Monday, March 27, 2006 at Riverside Hospital after a long battle with cancer. 1992 Graduate of Mansfield High School, PA and 1996 Graduate of Baptist Bible College, Clarks Summit, PA. Currently working on his graduate degree at Ashland Theological Seminary. Mark was Spiritual Director of the Landing Place Community, Columbus, Ohio, and also shared his vision of Kingdom and Community living in speaking engagements across the country and around the world. Survived by wife, Amy Palmer; son, Micah Palmer; parents, Richard and Vivian Palmer of Mansfield, PA; sister, Christiana Palmer of Philadelphia, PA; brother, C.J. Palmer of Vista, CA; father and mother-in-law, Bruce and Betty Smith of Columbus, OH; also the members of his Landing Place Community. Preceded in death by his first wife, Jennifer Palmer.

Mark was a friend of mine from college. I played basketball with him for one year and lived in the same dorm. I don’t “look up” to my peers the same way I do my elders, heros of the faith, etc., but I did look up to Mark. He was the first person to truly challenge my grid of theology. He challenged me to allow God the freedom to roam outside the box I had put him in. I am where I am today because of Mark’s love & influence on my life. He loved God very passionately and He wanted to make a difference in this world for the way of Jesus. He desired Kingdom values to be established on this earth. A mighty saint of God has been lost.

So yeah, I’m just at a loss. So many questions, so many questions. LIfe is so brief! It truly is a vapor. I just want to leave a mark like Mark did. I want to live my life with an intensity fueled by my love of Jesus. As I remember Mark preached on once, I want to be “out of my mind” for the sake of Jesus (2 Corinthians 5).

So as the Spirit directs, would you pray for Mark’s family. His first wife (and mother of his son) passed away of cancer not too long ago. His second wife Amy (I’ve never met) will be raising their son Micah (4 yrs. old). I’m sure the community they lead is hurting to say the least. They have lost two of their leaders in 3-4 years. Take them to throne room please.

And then live, just live. Live a full life.

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