Yesterday a the sweet mother of some of our very best friends went to be with Jesus after a very long battle with cancer. We knew that she was probably going to heaven very soon, and that God had not healed her on earth, even after so many prayers and her beautiful faith (which again is a testimony that God does not always heal while we are on earth), but it still was a shock to hear that she is no longer here. Today I have been overwhelmed by the knowledge that she is seeing Jesus face to face in heaven. She is free of pain. She is free of all things suffering. And that all of us who believe in Jesus as our Savior will one day see her again and be there in heaven forever worshipping God alongside this beautiful woman. I am rejoicing in the total freedom she is experiencing right now.
I've said it over and over, and I am sure I'll say it again: this world is NOT all there is!!! The pain that you are facing today - physical, emotional, spiritual, is only for a short time in relation to eternity. Some people might think that this attitude would make me throw in the towel on life here on earth. It is full of pain. It is full of tears. BUT - the hope of heaven gives me so so much energy to live well on this earth. To not focus on the pain or suffering, but rather to grow in trust of the God who knows best and who offers to all a life eternal in heaven someday. The reality is that every one of us will die (unless Jesus returns before that day) and none of know when that will be. Last night my sweet husband and I were talking about death, and how you never know when your last moment will be on this earth. I have had two respiratory arrests in the last 5 years. I totally stopped breathing and they did mouth to mouth to keep oxygen in my body until I started breathing on my own. I could have died. I could stop breathing at any moment. So could you. I am so thankful for those times when I realized that it could be the end of my life on earth. I am thankful because it helps me to try to live all for Jesus since I don't know when it will be over for me on this earth. I don't want to waste a moment. That doesn't mean that I never do waste a moment - I definately have times when I am not livng the way I should and am wasteful of what God has given me. But, with the reminder that earthly life is so short, I am all the more determined to live in this day to bring a smile to the face of God by loving Him and others with my moments.