Summary: The funeral service of a man who came to know Christ in the final four years of his life.
George Frank Fields Sr.
On July 6th, 1928, something funny happened in heaven. Even God laughed at it and God laughed so hard that in that split second in which God was forming a baby in the womb of Melaina Fields, some of God’s laughter got mixed up in the forming of the baby, and that child was destined to be humorous and a jokester.
So if Geroge Frank Fields ever got you with a good joke or used humor to get you out of a situation, know that he got it honestly from heaven. Humor was just one of the gifts God placed in Frank to touch the lives of people. God appointed Frank 27,067 days to make a difference in the lives of others for him. The psalmist has said, in Psalm 90:12, “teach us oh lord to number our days that we might gain a heart of wisdom.”
All of us here today have received an appointment of days that are quickly passing away. Are we using those days in the knowledge that one day God we’re going to stand before God and give an account.
When Frank’s days came to an end, there was an announcement in heaven that a child of God was coming home. The child born with the sense of humor would now delight the heart of God in a special way because the Bible boldly declares in Psalms 116:15 Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints.
Today, we often think death is something to be avoided at all cost. We try to resist getting old by having all kinds of beauty treatments, wrinkle removers, and dyes. We do all that we can to stay away from the cemetery. But the world’s view of death is not the same as God’s view of death.
For the believer in Jesus Christ, death is merely the passing from one form of service to God to another. You see Frank Fields decided to die few years ago when he made the decision to follow Jesus Christ. He took Jesus at his word, when Jesus said, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies. We may be at a funeral, with a corpse in a coffin, but I submit to you, that George Frank Fields Sr. is more alive today than he has ever been. He is now among that great cloud of witnesses who has gone on before us cheering us on in the faith.
There is a verse in the bible that speaks of time and chance as being a great factor in our lives. It says in Eccles. 9:11 I have seen something else under the sun: The race is not to the swift or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all.
God blessed Frank with great ability as an athlete. He could play baseball, basketball, swim, football, bowl and more. His basement has an assortment of trophies of his athletic accomplishments. What would have happened if he had been born in 68 instead of 28 as far as sports are concerned? I’m told that, when he was at Central, he was doing “the Magic Johnson moves on the basketball court, before Magic Johnson was in his mother’s womb. His life represents the reality of the many Black Athletes who never got the opportunity to play big time because of the color of their skin.
Had he been born in 68 though, he would have missed out on the gifts of Sylvia, and Lori and George and his grandchildren. There’s no doubt in my mind, he would have gladly for gone any professional contract to have the love of his family that he had because they meant so much to him.
People were always more important to Frank than were things or money. His delight was in people. When we asked his family for words to describe him, they said he was humorous, comical, a jokester, a funny surpriser and sometimes just downright crazy. These are the characteristics of a person seeking to bring joy into the lives of others.
Frank also had a thoughtful side to him. He was the one to remember you on your birthdays. He didn’t just grab a card that said Happy Birthday. He read the cards until he found one that fit you from his perspective. His son George said, “it touched him how his father chose cards, because when he could no longer get the cards himself, he would send his son to find a card that had such and such a message.” It trained his son how to find cards for others.