Today I changed my original topic I had planned in order to honor one of my dear college friends and sorority sister Jill whose husband died unexpectedly Christmas Eve at the age of 58. This is a memorial to him, Billy, and hopefully will help others grieving a recent loss of a loved one or a continuing grief or wound that will not heal. Billy's earthly pain is gone and any suffering he had on Earth and in heaven he is promised 'no more tears, no more pain, and a heavenly body.' His children and wife hurt right now in a big way. Words will not really help them now, but the love,prayers and support of friends will ease their pain somewhat.
Death is going to come for all of us. We can not escape it, but we never know when or what age. My younger son lost about 8 friends, 3 of which I knew, between the ages of 17 and his 26th birthday. The death of a child, baby, or young person is especially difficult. Death of anyone at any age is sad and leaves a gaping unexplained hole even though as people get up in years you expect it more. An aunt of mine also died on Christmas Eve this year and she was in her 90's and my husbands' mom died several years ago on Christmas Eve as well and she was well up in years. Still she is missed. My husband said she went home to celebrate Jesus birthday with him. Parents should never have to bury children, but it happens. By the way, God is not the one to blame although many grieving people sure get angry at Him.
In the big scheme of things nothing else is important in the world when death knocks on your door. You realize your priorities and they may change. Funerals even bring people together at times as strange as that sounds. God can use all things bad or good in life for His ultimate purposes.
Hebrews 9:27 says " it is appointed unto men once to die and after that the judgment." Ecclesiastes 3:2 tells us " there is a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot." 1 Corinthians 15:55 says "where oh death is your victory and where oh death is your sting?"
I have known of cases where people go to doctor for something routine and something goes wrong. Do not blame the doctors. People always want someone to pin blame on a person to 'get back' at someone, be it God or a human. Sometimes things just happen and there is no explanation. Our time here on this earth is relatively short.James 4:14 says "For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away." Be sure to not let a day go by where you do not tell your spouse you love them and stop the quarrels and learn to forgive. Try to forgive those who hurt you as you may not get another chance. Life is indeed short. Too short to stay mad and hopeless. No one is promised tomorrow. We all will die be it from cancer, accidents, old age, natural causes, illness, or however. It is unavoidable. Do not sit and worry about it but live life to the fullest and make sure you know Jesus as your savior so you can spend eternity with Him.
One of my favorite Bible verses concerning death does not come from the traditional Psalm 23 you hear read at funerals but it is found in Psalm 116:15 and it says "Precious in the site of the Lord is the death of his saints". Maybe someone deeply grieving is not ready to give up their loved one but God calls it precious. Give God your grief and pain. Jesus suffered the ultimate death on the cross but rose again. Those who die in Christ we will see again in God's heavenly kingdom. Death is not the end.
We will all go to a final resting place. If you know Jesus it is heaven. Isaiah 14:3 says "When the LORD has given you rest from your pain and turmoil and the hard service with which you were made to serve". It is time for rest from the work on earth. Do not dread it but embrace it as your reward for a life well served. Death is not fun for those left behind grieving so we need to stay close to God and believe in the promise of seeing our loved ones again in glory. John 3:16 says "For God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten son that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have EVERLASTING life."
Pray for this family today as they lay Billy to rest. One day we will be reunited in heaven.
PRAYER: Do you know if the Lord called you home today you are ready to meet Him? I did not say " are you baptized or are you a church member" but have you asked Jesus to be Lord of your life? We do not know the day nor hour He will return to take us home. Do not be mad at Him. He uses all things for ultimate good. Do not use that verse in Romans 8:28 to comfort any one with a loss, at least not now. Lord help me reach out to those who grieve and just be their friend and pray for them. Give me a heart of compassion for those hurting. Give me the right words to say. In Jesus name. Amen.
Click on the link below to listen to a comforting song.
NOTE:May I heartily recommend a book by my friend Kathe Wunnenburg who has experienced the death of children. It is called 'Grieving the Loss of a Loved One'. Check Amazon to order it.
Also the book entitled 'A Twentieth Century Miracle' by Jerry Parrick which is now out of print is a true account about a man who died and came back to life only to serve the Lord. My grandma had me read it years ago.