It was a long and tough road. For fifteen years my mom struggled with COPD–a horrible disease that literally sucks the life out of you. There were times that she would tell me that it felt like she was breathing through a straw. Through all of her struggles she kept her great sense of humor and her absolute “other oriented” frame of mind. Even near the end, when she was laboring for every breathe, she was asking about those she loved.
It’s been a year since Jesus came for my momma. I know to some of you that sounds cliched, corny, or naive. Think what you will you. Jesus said,
1 “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. (John 14:1-3 NIV)
Did you see it? Jesus said, “I will come back and take you to be with me…” Jesus came for my momma. I can’t tell you what a comfort that simple, yet most profound truth has been during the past year to me and my family.
When we lose someone we love it is painful, agonizingly painful. Yet, God speaks in the midst of our pain and we are reminded that, “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of one of His faithful servants.” (Psalm 116:15 NIV) “Precious?” Absolutely! The God who knit my mother together in her mother’s womb is the same God who gave her every breathe she ever breathed. He is the One who “ordered her steps” throughout her almost 70 years on this planet. He is the One who strengthened her in her struggles. He is the One who comforted her in her sorrows, reassured her of His love when she was fearful, and He is the One who ordained her final breathe. Because I believe what God says, every moment of her life, the joys as well as the trials, were full of infinite value. Because I believe what God says I know beyond a shadow of doubt that Jesus came for my momma and her death, painful as it has been for my family, is much more than painful…it is a precious pain because my momma loved Jesus with all of her heart. As painful as the last few days of her life were, I wouldn’t have missed being with my family, gathered by my momma’s side and waiting for Jesus to come, for anything.
Father, my prayer today is that You will keep us mindful of the precious gift You have given us in the lives of those we love, and who love us. Thank You for calling us beyond our pain so that we might see the death of our loved ones as precious in Your sight.