Don gave us $150 to pay for the appreciation party last Monday. The pizza is ordered; the drinks are cooling in the frig. We have the menu planned, and we have door prizes to give away. Everyone will have a nice time. We even had fancy appreciation/thank you certificates made. The tables were set up today and table cloths cover them. The party is Tuesday at 11:30 am. Today is Monday.
Don took his motorcycle out this morning. He never made it back. He was killed in a freak accident; he lost control of the bike.
Don was our lead manager at the Isles. He wanted to show appreciation for those who volunteer right along side the managers, doing little things to make other residents happy and comfortable. Thank you, Don, for caring.
We pray for you family and their loss. We will honor you tomorrow at the party you planned.
Death is never planned. It comes unexpectedly most of the time. I always hope the deceased knew the Lord. Are you going to heaven? How do you know? There is only one way to get there: Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved…for eternity…in heaven…with the angels and the saints…and the Lord. It says so in the Bible: John 3:16 and other verses.
Life is a fleeting gift like a bouquet of roses, sweet smelling, blooming with vibrancy for a short time, yet gone with the wink of an eye. I learned this life-lesson at the age of fourteen after having a near-death experience with asthma. I saw life pass me by again at the age of twenty-two when my young husband died of melanoma. Many never learn the fragility of life. It pierced me again when I gave up a little boy for adoption and again when my daughter had her first diagnosis of melanoma. Life rolled over me when my young nephew died of an overdose, leaving behind a two-year old. Emptiness and despair cradled me after two divorces…the death of relationships and love, the waste of years and tears. Most see the gift disappear when the reality of losing a parent strikes. That precious gift gets unwrapped and enjoyed for such a short time. Friends go on to their heavenly rewards. Your first high school romance leaves the earth behind. Homes are dismantled and packed up. Precious relics of the past are sold or given away. Memories become your best friends. You buy your last car. You make your will. You wonder where the time went. Life slows to a card game or a movie on TV. When it’s bedtime, you recall your childhood prayer, “Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep; if I should die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take.”
At seventy, life has been played. I have my eyes on things above. Eternity is the gift that Christ has given me. It will never die or wilt away. Joy will be forevermore. My family and friends I’ll see once more, and I’ll stroll the streets of gold with saints of old.
Make sure you have used your gift wisely and lovingly, but the best is yet to come. I pray you are ready and sure your name is in the book of life.
My blog today is going to tell the story of a friend who died today. Her story isn’t much different from anyone else’s in that she lived until she was 82 and died of the after-effects of chemotherapy treatment for cancer.
The real difference in her story is how she and her husband appeared to others. I first met them when we moved into the Isles a year ago. They had just moved in, also. We ate together and laughed together. She was a fiesty lady, meaning she had a lot to say and a lot to do. She and her husband were always running to doctor appointments or to the hospital. She had just gone through a bout of chemotherapy and was over the cancer, but she has side effects that dealt a blow to her lungs and her heart.
The BIG thing about this couple was the loving way in which her husband took care of her. She was in a wheelchair and was very thin, almost emaciated. She had no hair left from the treatments, but she always wore a cute hat to the dining room. Her husband pushed her wheelchair for her and carried an air tank on his walker for her. If she was chilled, he would get up and get her a sweater out of a carryall bag. He never complained, nor did he ever show any anger or frustration for all the things he and she had to go through. This is the picture of true love. Everyone can love a good-looking person with no issues, but it takes a certain strength to endure illness and the ravages of that illness with a loved one who used to be that good-looking person.
Her disposition was usually cheerful, but sometimes her body made her look “on the edge.” She kept up a good front for everyone even though she had pain and other discomforts. It was a lot of work to get her ready to go see the doctor, but her husband didn’t mind. He was always there by her side no matter what.
Monday, she couldn’t breathe, so she asked him to take her to the hospital. Tuesday, she could barely speak but wanted last rites from a priest. Wednesday, she and her husband spoke to each other for two hours by giving hand signals before she died. Her body had had enough and her spirit was willing to let go. We all want to live as long as possible, but we all seem to know when that last breath is nearby.
I’ll miss her smile and the couple as an example of how to get through life even in the worst of circumstances. At the funeral her husband said he’d need a few days to feel better…he had collapsed in the hospital and injured himself when she died. But his spirit is still hanging on. He will rejoin our family when he feels better. He will go on living with the spirit of happiness that they shared as a couple. She will be by his side in spirit.
Another sad day. A good friend and game-player died last night. She had a terrific life. She lived to be 88 like my mother. We had a lot in common. She knew she was dying…we all know that…but it never quite sinks in until a friend dies. She asked me a month or so ago, “Will I know people in heaven?”
I told her that people do know each other in heaven, but the relationships are different. Our husbands won’t be our husbands, etc., but we will know he is a loved one that we knew on Earth.
I know she’s in a better place. She suffered and was alone here. But she always had a smile and always wanted to challenge me in a game. Most of the time she won. She liked to win.
Now she has won the crown that God promises those who endure. She has run the race. She will weep no more and have no pain. She’ll be clothed in white garments and she’ll be beautiful.
Saying goodbye to two friends in one week is difficult, but the aftermath is joyful because they are both dancing on the streets of gold. I’ll be there one day. Will you? Do you know where you’re going? Are you sure?
Just returned from a visit to a funeral home in Vero. My friend Dorothy died this past week , last Tuesday. She was 92 and very active until Christmas day when she had a heart attack which was followed , over the past month, by four strokes.
Dorothy loved Bible Study…my Bible study. Every week she would be the first one into the room and the last to leave. As she left, she would hug and kiss me and thank me for that night’s study. She made me feel worthwhile…and appreciated. She was my fist student here at the Isles. She wanted to learn all about heaven. The title of the study was: Everything you’ve always wanted to know about heaven. It took six weeks to find out, but during that time she wanted to accept Jesus as her savior and she wanted to be baptized. She inspired others to want the same.
At one study, I baptized two women who had never read the Word. Dorothy was one of them. She smiled and clapped and was the most joyful person I have ever seen. She told my husband Frank that she’d never felt so clean. Isn’t that amazing what Jesus can do for someone in their 90’s? He doesn’t care how old you are. He is ready to be there for you whenever you decide. Tonight while saying my goodbye’s, I told her family that she is definitely in heaven. She is joyful and probably dancing with Jesus. I am so glad I was a part of her life and her salvation. She’ll meet me at the door to heaven one day and this time she’ll teach me all about heaven.