Fred Smith, an influential Christian businessman was seriously ill in the summer of 2004. He was hospitalized, semiconscious, and not expected to live.
Periodically he would mutter, "I want to go home, I want to go home." After an emotional family conference, the family concluded they should respect Fred’s wishes and allow him to die. They agreed to remove him from dialysis, knowing that his death would come in a few days.
For the 36 hours, Fred’s family sang, read Scripture, prayed, and said their good-byes. Fred seemed to get worse; he went into pulmonary failure and choking aspiration. His daughter Brenda sat with him at midnight, begging God for answers.
Fred awoke. Brenda quietly told her dad of the family’s decision to follow his desire to "go home." She explained that he would slip into unconsciousness and then step "from here to there."
Suddenly Fred’s eyes were wide open: "Home? I didn’t mean heaven; I meant Parkchester [his house on Parkchester Drive]." Laughing through tears, Brenda quickly called the doctors to reschedule his dialysis, and Fred returned to what he called "the washing machine." A year later, while still prepared to go to his heavenly home, Fred was happy to be at his current home in Dallas.
Related Text Illustrations
Contributed by Tim Zingale on Dec 11, 2000
In Sir Edwin Arnold’s Light of Asia, he tells a parable from the Buddha about a mother who had lost her child. Carrying its dead body in her bosom, she come to the buddha and said:"Lord and Master, do you know any medicine that while be good for my child?" "Yes," he said, "bring me a mustard ...read more
Contributed by Tim Zingale on Dec 12, 2000
My brother served his first parish in Massillion, Ohio, as an associate pastor, with the late Pastor Maurice "Mo" White. Pastor White was a very large, strong and vibrant man. During one Lenten season, one of the older, but faithful members of the church came with her husband to an evening Lenten ...read more
Contributed by Rich Young on Jan 17, 2001
We should be like little Johnny. After church, Johnny tells his parents he has to go and talk to the minister right away. They agree and the pastor greets the family. "Pastor," Johnny says, "I heard you say today that our bodies came from the dust & when we die our bodies go back to ...read more
Contributed by Mark Haines on Jan 20, 2001
Who would ever dream of amputating his own leg? Nobody-- unless that person had lost his mind or was faced with the grim choice of losing either his leg or his life. That was Bill Jeracki’s terrible predicament, according to The Denver Post, when he was out fishing alone in the foothills of ...read more