Sunday, June 10, 2012

Sunday Devotions - Troubled Hearts and Saying Goodbye

"Don't let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. There is more than enough room in my Father's home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am. And you know the way to where I am going." John 14:1 - 4

A couple weeks ago when we were home in Indiana visiting family my grandfather passed away. I suppose it wasn't totally unexpected because he had been diagnosed with Parkinson's about four years ago and had gone downhill quickly in the last year. Still, losing a grandparent is always hard. Grandpa Asa was the fourth grandparent that has passed away but, for me, definitely the hardest to lose. 

You see, I lived with Grandpa and Grandma for four years while I attended college. My college was small and they lived within driving distance so I commuted to help save money. Grandpa was a special character. He fed me peanut butter and ice cream for breakfast when I was little. He could drink coffee at all hours of the day or night and he always offered you a cup of coffee no matter when you stopped by. Grandpa always wore bib overalls and seed corn hats, except to church. I'll never forget the time, when I was living with him,  when I went to do laundry only to find that Grandpa had washed a pair of his bib overalls with a full package of chewing tobacco in the pocket. I had to clean out washed Red Man out of the washing machine!! 

After I was married with kids, DR and I would return and stay with Grandpa Asa on visits. Grandpa once let my twin boys, aged 2 or 3 at the time, play with a big bucket of field corn on the living room carpet! 

I've cried a lot for Grandpa Asa. My heart has been troubled. 

I sure hadn't planned for a funeral during vacation; I had to buy a new dress and shoes. I was having a hard time dealing with the loss of Grandpa and I didn't know what we should do with our kids. My boys are almost 8 and remembered Grandpa well. Yahoo, I didn't know. Finally we decided that we would bring them early to the viewing for a few minutes before DR took them to play and the boys would attend the funeral while Yahoo was with a family friend. 

As we went to the casket during the viewing, my three year old daughter asked what was the matter with Papa. Trying my best not to cry, not succeeding, I answered that his body didn't work anymore and he went to live with Jesus and the angels. Yahoo exuberantly responded, "I want to go live with the angels too!!" 

My boys each went to the casket once or twice but I could tell that they weren't comfortable. I think mostly because Grandpa didn't look like the grandpa they remembered. Yahoo though kept asking over and over to go see Papa. She wasn't sad or upset standing at the casket. She just kept happily repeating to me that his body stopped working and Papa's was with the angels now. And she kept asking me why I was sad and crying. 

Yahoo taught me a lot that day. Papa's with the angels, which was a good thing and I shouldn't be sad. For Yahoo it was so simple. The facts were simple and she trusted that everything was fine. Papa was with Jesus, right? Why shouldn't everything be fine? Why couldn't I feel as happy as she? I learned I need to listen to the logic of my children more often. I think they understand God better than I do. 

Dear Lord, Make my heart like a child's today. Ever trusting and ever peaceful. You've promised us joy and gladness, peace of mind and heart. Help me not to be troubled but to look forward to eternity with You, when I'll see my loved ones again. Amen. 


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