The Man Who Knew Love

Today marks the one year mark of Jimmy’s passing.  This week our family is in Montana at the location where he spent his last days and hours and took his last breath.  What a special place!    I was excited to have one of Jimmy’s close friends and accountability partners, Clayton Chambers, ask to write a post about Jimmy for this special time.   I know you will enjoy and benefit from this post ‘The Man Who Knew Love’ and the included song he wrote and sang for Jimmy.  Thank you Clayton  for loving Jimmy and for sharing your heart about him during this week.  -Chuck Brazell

The Man Who Knew Love  by Clayton Chambers

The gym was packed.

Over four hundred folks, with students from nearly every state sat attentively in this gym, listening to speeches given by students who were running for positions in a mock election campaign. As dozens of candidates gave shaky, short, and sometimes superficial speeches, one student caught everyone’s eye. He sauntered onto the stage with a guitar in hand and a smile on his face; his countenance was one of a kind.

No one could really imitate Jimmy Brazell.

Jimmy Brazell - TeenPact National Convention

Positioning his guitar, he played a song. What followed, however, was one of the most sincere, passionate speeches I’ve ever heard.

He talked about love. He talked about how humans obtain purpose and meaning as they learn how to love. By loving, we receive life – we are living the way we were created to live, because we are doing what we were created to do.

But what sort of love was Jimmy referring to? His idea of love was not (and is not) popular. Love meant something different to him. Paraphrasing from his speech on that day…

“…When I say “Love,” I mean “to love,” with the pure, true, selfless love of Christ!”

“To love.” With Jimmy, love was an action. Love means sacrifice. Love shows grace. It gives second chances. It keeps no record of wrongs. It forgives. It perseveres. It hopes.

It seeks the betterment of others, regardless of what it costs you. It means laying your life down for someone else.


Jimmy Brazell- Teen Pact National Convention

You see, Jimmy could talk about love because he knew how to love.

Jimmy didn’t win a position as an elected official that year at TeenPact, nor did he care. To him, life didn’t revolve around popularity, possessions, or prosperity. It revolved around an honest quest to know love.

“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact you must give it to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements. Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket, safe, dark, motionless, airless, it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. To love is to be vulnerable.”
– C.S. Lewis

by Clayton Chambers

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4 Responses to The Man Who Knew Love

  1. Thank you, Clayton. This is beautifully written, it’s true, and it’s challenging. Thank you for sharing these moments of his life with those of us who weren’t there to see it. “It takes a lot of love to live.”

  2. Janet Baber says:

    This is so beautiful, Clayton. Jimmy made a lasting impact on the lives of so many and will be remembered for how he reflected the love of Jesus. His brief life makes me consider with urgency how we may “spur one another on toward love and good deeds” in the brief moments remaining. As tragic as it is to commemorate the anniversary of Jimmy’s death, it is fitting and good to remember this fine, Christian friend who so passionately exemplified the love of his Savior. Miss you, Jimmy.

  3. Dina Ash says:

    Beautifully written memory of the heart of Chandler…thanks for sharing! He is a special gift and has touched so many lives for Christ! Miss him dearly!!

  4. TJ Ware says:

    Great post. I think the CS Lewis quote is especially deep if you think about it, very appropriate.

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