/ Monday, November 11, 2019
In the midst of the loss of loved ones, I have been grateful. The gratefulness came as I thought about what we all might want as we pass from this life into the next one. We seldom consider what we would want that passing (or for a believer in Christ, that home going) to be like.
As I considered my mother’s passing recently or that of my wife’s father(also fairly recently), I was grateful for a number of important things.
- They were both well cared for. Whether it be family members, or health care professionals, or volunteers, both parents received good care and they were treated humanely and respectfully.
- They knew they were loved. They had opportunity to either see or speak to family members and loved ones before they left this Earth. They were able to communicate love and receive love. Both had either mild or more severe dementia. Yet they could still recognize and communicate with loved ones.
- They did not suffer much as they left this Earth. They had some minor things, but were spared real suffering.
- They had faith that they would enter Christ’s presence after their death. Both longed to be with Christ and were at peace with God. They did not have fear, each had some joy at considering their home going.
- They were able to receive special attention in their final hours. My wife was able to compose and sing a special song to her Dad. Her brothers and some of the grandkids were able to see her Dad before his home going. My Mom said often that God had always counted her days. My sister was able to spend her last afternoon with Mom as she slowly slipped from this Earth into Christ’s presence, caring for her and just being with her.
Hope for the Future
What do we hope for as we leave this life and enter eternity? What do we want that to look like? In what ways can we prepare for that day? Longer days on this Earth are not always better days. Perhaps at times it is better to live a shorter life by some months or years, but to leave while memory is still intact, there is peace in our heart, we are in good relationship with our loved ones, and in good relationship with God Himself. I really could not ask for much more for my Father in law or my Mother than the type of home going they experienced. I hope for something similar for myself.
I am grateful for the kind of death both my father in law and my mother were granted. While I miss them, I cannot ask for more than what they were given and hope that if Christ shall tarry, that when I go, it might be with such peace, faith, and joy as I have seen in them as they passed into the presence of Christ.
Jay Randall is a church planting catalyst who trains, coaches, and evaluates church planters in Québec.