A tearful goodbye/celebration

I don’t know what else to call it, besides the best funeral I’ve ever been to.  It sounds crazy to say that, but that’s how I feel.  I was dreading this funeral so badly, but was blessed by attending it in so many ways.  My dad’s cousin Jimmy died on Saturday.  He was only 52 and it was totally unexpected.  Married with three beautiful boys, the oldest is a teen.  It’s so hard to think about sometimes, but I urge you to take the time to talk with someone about what you would like to happen when you’re gone.  Jimmy and his wife did that, and I want to do it too.  There were 3 songs sung by two women, and then we sang two hymns.  These were songs that he had wanted.  The pastor opened up the floor for people to talk, and I was amazed by the outpouring of love to the family.  Everyone spoke of how much he loved his family, and how much he loved the Lord.  He touched so many lives, and didn’t even realize it I’m sure.  That’s just the kind of person he was.  He cared.  People from his church, and people from his workplace all loved him, and were blessed by the Holy Spirit within him.  One woman was talking about how he always lifted them up if they were struggling at work, and then she broke out singing Wind beneath My Wings!  It was beautiful!  Another person spoke highly of Jim, and didn’t know his wife, but said he knew her potato salad, and to fed ex it to them every now and then if she had to.  That made her laugh!  There were tears and there was laughter, and I guess the difference that I felt in this funeral was this.  We were a room filled with more believers in Jesus Christ than not.  We know that his earthly presence will be missed, but that he is truly home with God right now.  We may not understand it, but God has a plan for Jim, and it includes him at His side.  The pastor then preached, because he said that’s what Jim wanted him to do.  He preached about salvation, and that doesn’t mean just doing good things.  We have to confess, repent, and ask for fogiveness of our sins, and He will forgive.  We need to ask Jesus into our hearts and lives, and commit to follow Him.  And it’s too late when we’re in the coffin.  I had some family members sitting right there with me that needed to hear that, but I’m not sure they did.  I don’t understand it, but I don’t need to.  I just need to continue to pray for them.  (Off on a tangent again!)  Anyway, even in his death, Jim was witnessing to others.  He  planned that all out, and he knew who needed to hear it!  One person that stood up said we might ask why?  We should turn that around and we get YHW.  That stands for Your Holy Will!  Isn’t that great?  WHY= Your Holy Will 

I could go on and on, that’s how amazing it was!  I’ll stop, but I ask for prayers for his family.  I know they have a great church family that will lift them up, but you can never have too many prayers! 

I have one more funeral to attend this week.  A friend who passed away on Sunday, unexpectedly at the age of 36.  He too has a wife and 2 kids, the oldest is 12.  I just ask that these families be lifted in prayer, and that God would wrap His loving arms around them and provide comfort to them, that only He knows how. 

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