Monday, February 21, 2011


Tuesday February 15, 2011 my mother went home to be with the Lord.  She was 83.  My family and I grieved as all families do when a loved one passes on.  However through the grief we were able to rejoice over Mother’s life and legacy.  As we stood around her and watched her take her last breath we said our final words of goodbye until we meet again on the other side in Heaven.  With tears streaming down my face I said, “We’ve been blessed.”  My family and I have truly been blessed by the lives of my father and mother. 

The Bible says in Revelation 14:13, “Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.”   “Yes,” says the Spirit, “they will rest from their labor, for their deeds will follow them.”   I am blessed because the deeds of my mother follow her.  She has left a legacy that will influence me forever.  Her blessing upon my life is lasting.  The testimony of life, her commitment to the Lord, her faithful witness to Him, her Christ-like character, and her journey of ever increasing faith – all has impacted me in such a way that the way I go about life is forever affected. 

During the memorial service I had the blessing of singing a hymn, “The Solid Rock”, with my two sons Josh and Andrew.  I was blessed to be able to sing “Rise Again”, because of Jesus’ resurrection and my mother’s salvation through faith in Jesus, knowing that she would one day rise again with a new body.  I was blessed to give a eulogy recounting some of the stories we remember as a family and how she has influenced her family to “trust and obey” the Lord.  I was blessed by the pastor who gave the message and encouraged us in God’s truth.  I was blessed by the gracious outpouring of family and friends and spiritual family who served us with prayers, hospitality, kind remarks, heart-warming memories, and food. 

How will you live your life so that it blesses others, even long after you’re gone?  What impact for Christ will you make on others?  What deeds, words, actions from your life will follow after you? 

“One life will soon be past.  Only what’s done for Christ will last.”

Monday, February 7, 2011


Sometimes it’s hard to believe that when God is silent or He delays an answer to our prayers that it’s because He loves us. We tend to think God just doesn’t care. We may even question the presence of God. It can become a severe test of our faith. What helps us deal with this? I think there are a couple of things God wants us to know that will help us.

Even Those That Jesus Loves Get Sick.
In John 11:1, 3 we learn, A man named Lazarus was sick. He was from Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha… So the sisters sent word to Jesus, “Lord, the one you love is sick.”

When Jesus received the news of Lazarus He told His disciples that his illness would not ultimately prove fatal. For believers in Christ, our sicknesses also – even our last sickness – will not “end us” in death, physical nor eternal. But we will get sick and Jesus loves us still.

Sometimes God Is Silent.
It says in John 11:5-6, Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. Yet when he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed where he was two more days.

Jesus loved this family but He did not hurry to them in Bethany. Rather He stayed two days were he was.

We sometimes have found ourselves in trouble and we pray to God, but He doesn’t seem to hear us. At those times we may think that God just doesn’t care about us. And we may become confused about God’s love for us.

But Paul reassures us of God’s constant love for us in Romans 8:35-39,
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? … No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Our death or the death of our loved ones, even if it should be sooner than expected, does not mean that Jesus doesn’t care about us.

Lazarus died, and at first it may seem confusing what Jesus said to His disciples.
In John 11:14-15 Jesus said, “Lazarus is dead, and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.”  These words seem really out of character for Jesus. His friend is dead, the sisters are crying, and Jesus is glad.

Charles Spurgeon said this about these verses: “Christ is not glad because of sorrow, but on account of the result of it. He knew that this temporary trial would help His disciples to a greater faith, and He so prizes their growth in faith that He is even glad of the sorrow which occasions it… He set so high a value upon His people’s faith that He will not screen them from those trials by which faith is strengthened.”

God loves you through the sickness.
God loves you through the silence.
God loves you through the strengthening of your faith.

As our faith matures, we see more than meets the eye, we become more secure in God’s love for us, and we become more confident in the words and ways of God.