Joey Feek died earlier this month at the untimely age of 40. She achieved success as a singer with her husband Rory as part of the duo Joey + Rory. They had a hit single "Cheater Cheater," continued putting out albums of quality and had a sense of their artistic selves by recording and releasing albums with religious themes.
Joey Feek learned that she had cervical cancer and eventually decided to abandon further treatment last year. She and her family moved back to Indiana where she grew up to live out the last months of her life surrounded by family, including their young daughter, Indiana.
Rory documented the ups and downs of the remaining time on a most heartfelt, often emotional blog, This Life I Live. If you haven't read it yet, do so. It describes how a couple can face the end of life with a sense of peace and celebrating good times together even when the ultimate end is near. Their faith certainly underpinned their strength.
In February, Joey + Rory put out "Hymns That Are Important To Us," 14 songs with religious themes. The songs included "I'll Fly Away," "Jesus Loves Me," "The Old Rugged Cross," " How Great Thou Art" and "It is Well With My Soul." The songs were recorded when Joey was well enough to sing, and the fact of the matter was that she still was fully capable in that category and sounds lovely - especially when you know she is no longer with us.
The most touching song is "Take My Hand, Precious Lord," which sticks with you thanks to lines like "I am tired, I'm weak, I am worn/Through the storm, through the night/Lead me on to the light/Take my hand, precious Lord/Lead me home."
To say the lines resonate with a sense of faith would be an understatement. In truth, the song was recorded last summer before it became apparent that Feek's illness was not going to have a good outcome.
What we are left with is an understanding of the profound strength and faith that the Feeks had in each other and a higher power to guide them. It's not only a case of the story - though that would be sufficient, of course - but also the beauty of the music they were able to craft together. They did it their way in life and death.