Brianna Becker's genuine spirit and loving smile captured my heart instantly when we met on UT's West Mall nearly four years ago. She was passionate about making this darkening world brighter. She championed justice for the innocent. From our very first conversation, we shared a deep understanding of purpose as well as a few tears of conviction. She shared her sparkling faith with me that first day.
Since then, I've had the pleasure and honor of joining her at various events spanning the breadth of the conservative and liberty-loving political spectrum.
It was shocking to hear on Saturday morning, September 26, that she'd been struck and killed while jogging the afternoon before.
This UT senior was unlike any young Longhorn I'd ever met. Her courage to publicly stand for her beliefs, for what was right and true, set her apart from the burnt orange masses. Her grace and optimistic realism was a breath of fresh air in the Texas political scene. Her poise, stage presence and messaging pointed to a true statesman in the making. To me, Brianna, with her unforgettable red-lipped smile, embodied Philippians 2:14-16. "Do everything without arguing or complaining, so that no one can speak a word of blame against you. Live clean, innocent lives as children of God in a dark world full of crooked and perverse people, so that you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the Word of Life..."
Brianna Nichole Becker leaves us a multi-faceted legacy of incredible depth. I am most thankful for her legacy of encouragement -- she continually spoke positive words into my life. I cherish that my last words to her on this earth were ones of encouragement. (She taught me well!)
It seems to our earthbound sensibilities that the best people -- the "salt of the earth" -- are often swept up to heaven "far too soon." Perhaps this is because, spiritually speaking, they are the best runners. Brianna finished the course set before her well in advance of any of us. She passed a test she didn't know was scheduled so soon for her -- the biggest test of all -- one whose score has eternal impact. Brianna Becker aced the "well done, good and faithful servant" test. (I'd say that beats taking the LSAT any day!)
Brianna WAS the real deal. Now this amazing friend and daughter is wrapped tightly in her Heavenly Father's arms. I wish I could see the smile that's on her face now!