Home > Life, Our Cancer Journey > A Gift from God

A Gift from God

When hospice came in, I began to make plans for the inevitable, knowing that when the time came there would be too much to do while too many emotions clouded my mind. I remember sitting down to write a tentative obituary, attempting to sum up my husband’s life in but a few words. It seemed an impossible task—until God brought a story to mind. A story I had heard many times over the years. A story from his mother. 

Laura became pregnant with Matt during their training to be missionaries. Realizing that this would mean she would miss many of the classes, Laura was far from pleased. One night her displeasure was brought short. She had a dream, and in her dream she had a baby boy whose name was Matthew.

Upon waking, Laura told her husband of her dream and they looked up what the name Matthew meant. It means “a gift from God.” That day Laura’s attitude did an abrupt 180 as God’s message became loud and clear. This pregnancy, this son, was a gift from God.

And so the obituary was written. In a nutshell, Matt’s life was a gift from God to his family and friends, which he gave back to God in a lifetime of service.


SKANEATELES | Matthew Cochran, 51, of Skaneateles, died Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2013, at home, after a two-year battle with pancreatic cancer. Matthew was born in Williamsport, Pa., to Francis and Laura (Taylor) Cochran. His mother always reminded him that his name meant “a gift from God.” Matt has been just that to his family and friends. He has been a gift from God and a faithful servant to God. Raised in Venezuela by missionary parents, Matt followed in their steps. During missionary training, he met his wife, Rosie, and they returned to Venezuela. After serving 20 years with New Tribes Mission, ministering in remote tribal locations, they moved to central New York, where Matt spent several years ministering to migrant Hispanic workers, before taking the pastorate at the First Baptist Church in Skaneateles, in September of 2009. He is survived by his wife, Rosie Cochran; four sons, Joseph (Jen), Jamie, Tyler, and Tyrel; his mother, Laura Cochran and two brothers, Fran and Keith (Rebekah). Matthew was predeceased by his father, Francis Cochran; his sister, Melissa Cochran and his sister-in-law, Janet Cochran. Family and friends are invited to call from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 1, 2013, at the Second Baptist Church, 1 Herman Ave., Auburn, following with a memorial service at 7 p.m. with the Rev. Brian Hill officiating. Brew Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

Published in The Citizen from January 31 to February 1, 2013

(Link to the obituary.)


I am a former missionary, mother of four great sons (and a wonderful daughter-in-law!), and author of three Christian suspense novels: Betrayed, Identity Revealed, and A Murder Unseen. (Available at: Amazon.com.) I have a passion for God, my family, and writing!
If you want to connect with me, join me on TwitterFacebookGoodreads, and Pinterest.  Interested in updates by email? CLICK HERE!

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Categories: Life, Our Cancer Journey
  1. February 3, 2013 at 7:39 am

    His love has touched us all, through you.

  2. February 3, 2013 at 9:50 am

    Hi Rosie, yes, Matt truly was a gift from God! He and his family have touched and you all continue to touch my life even today. We are a long ways away from the carefree adventures we enjoyed as MKs in Amazonas, but the memories live on. Thanks for sharing this with us. We pray the God of all comfort might comfort your heart during this difficult time. As someone who has walked this lonely trail before you, I can attest to the fact that God does comfort, the nights are dark, but HIS light shines though. Joy does come in the morning Rosie! Thanks again.

    • February 4, 2013 at 8:43 pm

      Mike, I know you understand. Thanks for your prayers and words of encouragement.

  3. February 3, 2013 at 10:00 am

    May God’s grace and peace remain with you and your family as Matt watches down from heaven and smiles upon each of you for your outstanding service you gave to him. You have touched our lives for certain and will continue to do so in ways you may not even know. Much love and prayers ~Janet~

  4. Colin & Cilla Gregory
    February 3, 2013 at 11:57 am

    Rosie though you are going through the darkest time, your words are truly inspirational.
    I have shared some of your tribute to a loved one who is going through the pain of a husband departing to be with The Lord, and your Hope has shined in her darkness.
    The Lord Bless you and your family.

    • February 4, 2013 at 8:47 pm

      Thankful to hear our journey could help shine hope in someone else’s darkness.

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