Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Blessed Assurance

It's hard to believe that only one week ago, we were returning from a wonderful trip to Austin. This week has held a lot. So much so that I have no idea how a family with no belief in assurance of salvation, or no belief in God could make it thru a week like this.
As our family gathered around "Papa" at 10 pm on Thursday night, we watched as they unhooked the ventilator, the medicines, everything. Although it was difficult to watch, as he struggled to breathe, we sang hymns, laughed at the fact that he was snoring, remembered our favorite "Papa" memories. When he took his last breath, I nearly collapsed to the floor in tears. The room was filled with emmence sorrow, but also with the greatest joy I've experience in many years. The words of the hymns "The Joy of the Lord will be my strength," "Blessed Assurance, Jesus is Mine," "A Mighty Fortress is our God,"....all of them....they all have new meaning to me. I watched my father-in-law depart this world and enter into eternity. Praise the Lord that I can KNOW exactly where Papa is today. He wasn't trusting in his church or good works to get him to Heaven. He was trusting in the Lord Jesus Christ....Blessed Assurance!!
On to Sunday afternoon....We had most of the family to our house for a time of fellowship and food before the visitation. To make a short story short, and to keep from saying things I shouldn't, Baylor was whacked in the head with a metal bat by an 11 year old cousin. So, my dad and I had to rush Baylor to the hospital while the rest of the family went to the visitation. (I told you all I have the greatest parents!! Thanks dad) Baylor got her head glued back together...I figured the glue would look prettier in pictures than stitches.
The kid's were mesmerized with Papa that evening. Baylor kept waiting for him to "quit resting." Piper wanted to hold his hand. Hudson and Corbin whispered to him--surely it was something to do with sports. They kept telling him that they couldn't wait to be with him, and Corbin let him know that "you don't look like yourself when you're not in your body, Papa." It was a sweet night, and I hope it created sweet memories for them.
He was buried at the D/FW national cemetary.....the sight of the cemetary, alone, will bring tears to ones eyes. The bagpiper was there, the rifle men....the full military honors. It was beautiful. As we sat through the following memorial service, we sang "I can only imagine." I've never been so at peace with death. Why it's taken me 30+ years to get here, I don't know.
Thank you all for your prayers and kind emails. They were greatly appreciated.


Erin said...

It's amazing how the Lord carries us through those difficult times! That was a precious post.

Traci said...