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‘You Gave Him to Us, and I Give Him Back to You’—Greg Laurie Grieves Loss of His Son, Christopher Laurie, 15 Years Ago

Greg Laurie / Christopher Laurie
Screengrab via Twitter / @greglaurie

Christopher Laurie, son of Greg and Cathe Laurie, was killed in a car accident in 2008. Greg Laurie, senior pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverside, California, continues to live in the tension of grief and hope even after 15 years.

“When I heard the news that our son had died, I went into a state of shock. I collapsed on the ground. I couldn’t stand. I couldn’t believe it was true,” Laurie said in a recent social media post commemorating the loss of his son. “I thought this is a dream. It’s a nightmare. And I’m going to wake up from it. I know I will. But, I didn’t.”

Even in the midst of the hardest, worst time of his life, Laurie was aware of another presence. “Strangely, in this dark place, God was there with me, and I sensed his presence.”

“I said to God, ‘You gave him to us, and I give him back to you,'” Laurie said.

It’s Been 15 Years Since Christopher Laurie’s Death

On July 24, 2008, Christopher Laurie died in an auto accident on his way to work at Harvest Christian Fellowship. He was just 33 years old. He was married with one daughter and another on the way.

Greg and his wife, Cathe, created a video, “Hope For Hurting Hearts,” with reflections and encouragement they found after the death of their son. Many grieving parents would agree with Laurie’s recollection: “You’re just numb.”

Cathe recalled, “He literally just slumped onto the floor. He just collapsed.” She continued, “I felt devastated myself, but I was so concerned by all the people that were surrounding me that I thought, ‘Look at my husband. What’s happening?'”

“I knelt down in front of Greg and I just grabbed his face and said, ‘Greg, we’re going to be okay. It’s going to be okay. We’ll be all right,'” Cathe said.

Laurie had trouble remembering what people said. Everything was a blur because of the state of shock he was in.

“When you have someone that you love go to heaven, you’re in pain. You don’t feel sorry for them. You feel sorry for you because you can’t talk to them,” Laurie recalled. “The first hours are just so, so hard.”

Laurie admitted to asking, “Why did this happen? Why? Why? Why? Why was it not me instead of him?”

“We all project our lives and what they will look like into the future,” Cathe explained. “And I felt as if someone had taken a big eraser to the chalkboard of my dreams and just erased everything and said, ‘It’s all going to be different.'”