Thursday, January 27, 2011

Wish you had been here …

… with us.  Back in March of 2010 I wrote about a Baptist Funeral, telling you a bit about what I have in mind.  Statistics show it wasn’t well read (probably because of THAT word) but there were two comments.

Wednesday I attended such a Baptist funeral, designed to celebrate life.

Lisa

That is a copy of the banner lifted behind the pastor.  It was created by her husband to help us celebrate her life.  Earlier Marty had written his beautiful feelings acknowledging God’s sovereignty and kindly allowed it to be reposted.  In Wednesday’s service we did celebrate her life with us, and her life that continues with the Lord.

A slide show of Lisa’s beautiful smile (always as in the banner) in so many photos crossed a screen to the front right of the sanctuary as we entered.  Their previous pastor gave her favorite verse:

Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.  (Proverbs 3:5-6 KJV)

She displayed her trust throughout her life, even in her last conscious interaction, and He had directed her path, all the way home. Her pastor spoke using “Lisa is …” for our God is Lord of the living, as He said:

I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living. (Matthew 22:32 KJV)

Attendees had an opportunity to write a card of our memories to leave for Marty.  Several were read during the service by her dear friends and all will go to Marty and the children for their own memory building.

Our pastor spoke of Lisa’s homeschooling; how she taught Sunday school classes; how she taught piano (without charging) to anyone interested in music; how she and Marty had boxes of Bibles in their home to give away.  He spoke of the recent times they discussed her future. While she held no fear, there was some apprehension about the process of death, but no hesitation regarding what awaited her afterward.

And, he gave the gospel – just as I explained in my earlier post.  He gave us John 3:16, along with John 3:18, then the end of that chapter, John 3:36.  He moved on to Romans 10:13, and reminded us that for all the good we know about Lisa, none of that helped her into heaven. Her belief in Christ fulfilled the scriptures.

Pink and silver balloons were released by those who went to the cemetery.  They were to remind us of the last song during the service, Chris Rice’s untitled that calls us to “Come to Jesus, and live.”

I’ve been involved in on-line discussions that include how much denial there is about our own death, or of those we love.  I must remind my readers not to avoid the subject nor the preparations, especially the spiritual.  And, I’ll leave you with my favorite, most faithful feelings about my own home going:

Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I. (John 14:28 KJV)

Grieving for what we miss is natural, but rejoicing about the future we attain is truth, too.  Come to Jesus, and live.

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful. Pastor Tim talks often of the funeral of his dear Mother and those of dear Christian friends. Pastor Tim also talks much of those funerals of those not saved. What a difference Jesus makes when we celebrate the life and loss of a loved one. That blessed hope. Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for taking time to read and comment on the blog. Comments should take into consideration this verse: Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. (Philippians 4:8 KJV)