Summary: This is the eulogy of a woman who was a member of the church, but not very active.
Funeral Irene Osborne 9-11-2004
God took notice and smiled on Thursday morning, and all that great crowd witnesses that surround us gave took notice as Sister Irene Osborne rose up out of her bed and took her place among the saints who have gone on before us.
She had a spot in the arena because she believed the promises of Jesus, when Jesus said in the word of God, “I am going away to prepare a place for you and if I go to prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me, that you also may be where I am.”
As believers, we do not see death as an end, but as entering into the greater promise that Jesus had given to us. All we have to do is take a look at death from God’s perspective and we know, there’s a whole lot more good things to come. The word of God says in Psalms 116:15 "Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints." This means that on September 9th 2004, Irene Osborne, brought joy in a special way to the heart of God.
What was it about her that moved the heart of God? What was it about her, that moved our hearts to sadness, when we discovered that she was now waiting for our arrival in heaven? She was more than a daughter, more than a wife, more than a mother, more than a sister, more than a relative, more than a good friend, and more than a strong Black woman. The greatest of all her titles is that she was a child of God.
The actual date of Irene Osborne’s death is probably not written down in a record book that we can easily get our hands on, you see the date on the obituary refers to the date her body cease to function. The real Irene, the part that lives forever, died a long time ago, when she heard of the call of Jesus Christ as a young girl upon her life. That date was recorded in heaven, because of the celebration which took place because of her conversion.
Jesus said, , "If any of you would come after me, you must deny yourself and take up your cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their lives will lose it, but whoever loses their lives for me will find it. What good will it be for a you to gain the whole world, and yet lose your soul? Or what can you give in exchange for your soul? For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father’s glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what he or she has done.
Sister Osborne picked up her cross to follow Jesus Christ, thereby making her death on Saturday just a means of passing from one form of service to God to another. Her reward will be based on what she has done in her service to God.
How do you go about denying yourself to follow Jesus? It begins with the realization that there is more to life than what we can see around us. It continues with the understanding that everyday, all of us are making choices for our lives that affect us and others. Not only are choices being made, the word of God tells us that a record is being kept of every decision that we make, and that one day we will give an account to God for those decisions.
There use to be a beer commercial ad that said, "you only live once, give it all the gusto you can in life." That slogan actually comes from the Old Testament in the bible. Only the beer commercial stopped halfway with the verse. The verse goes on to say, give it all you got, but realize that God is going to hold you accountable for the way you live it. If you were to die today, would you be ready to give God an account for the decisions you have made, and would you know with a certainty that you would spend eternity in heaven with God? If the answer is not yes, then perhaps your life is being lived in vain.
The good news about Irene Osborne , is that her living has not been in vain because she left this earth not trusting in her goodness, but in the grace and mercy found in Jesus Christ.
God gives each of us an assignment to work with in this world. God provides us all with a gift to offer. In thinking of the gift she had to offer, I think of the gift of hospitality. Irene knew how to make others feel at home