Summary: This is the service written for a man who became a strong believer in Jesus, but did so later in life, less than two years before he died. But during that two years he became strong in the Lord,and led his wife to Jesus, too.
I want to thank each of you for being here today to offer your love and support to ___________ and the entire _______ family. Your presence is a mighty strong statement as to the type of man _______ was; as is your words of comfort and concern, to his family.
I wish I could take your sorrow away, but I know I can’t. But it is vital that you realize this day of sorrow will soon turn to days of good and lasting memories of _______. And the knowledge of where he is now, and your gladness for him, will soon overtake any the grief you are feeling now at losing him in the body.
The loss of a loved one is probably the most difficult time in life. Grief is never a pleasant or comfortable thing to go through. We feel empty, stunned, and saddened.
There is no other social gathering that tugs at our heart the way a memorial service does. It is difficult to know what to say at times like this. How do you describe a lifetime of living in just a few short minutes? And what can you say to do justice to someone who was loved by so many and respected by all?
The answer is not by gathering together and celebrating the death of ______, but by remembering his life – and who this man was. And that is what I want us to do today – celebrate ________ ________! Celebrate how he always put others ahead of himself. Celebrate how he has touched every single person here in one way or another, leaving a mark that required us to care about him, too.
_______ came into this world on ___________________. He left his mark in many ways and on many people. And then the Lord God called him home on ________________.
_______ wasn’t considered great by the world around him, and he never made any huge fortunes. He never made any scientific discoveries and he never became famous.
But he did impact everyone he met. He was a simple man who had an honest heart. His goals were pure and his joy simple – the kind of person others just liked to be around. His friendships were loyal and true.
______ was a very stable presence in a very unstable world.
May I share with you how I met ______? His brother _______ is an elder at our church, and when _________ first found out that he had cancer, ________ made arrangements for him to meet me at the church and have me pray for him.
________ came and we were introduced. Neither _______ nor his wife were Christians at that point. We talked a little and then as he sat there, we laid hands on him and prayed for him. The first of many prayers for my new friend.
Soon, he started coming to the church with his wife. Not long after that, they came forward to give their hearts to Jesus. And we followed that up by baptizing them into the body of Christ.
I remember that day well. It was among the most special days of my life. I saw what I considered to be a miracle that day! He came to the baptism directly from receiving chemo treatment at the hospital. As we prepared for him to be immersed under the water, he asked me if I thought it would be okay with God to leave the bandaged hand out of the water. I told him I thought God understood and had no problem with it, as it was more important where his heart was than where his hand was.
And with that, we baptized ______. When he came up out of the water, there was an overwhelming sense of peace I had never felt before after a baptism. He was truly a child of God now, and God wanted everyone to know it!
And then it was her turn. As we stood in the water, I could tell she was starting to have doubts about going under. The look in her face going down was not the most peaceful look in the world, but when that Lady came up, her entire countenance changed. She had the most wonderful smile on her face I have ever seen, and from that day on, she has become a different woman. ______ told me sometime later that he was mighty proud of her for doing that with him. He said every man has a great love, and she was his.
My life is better having known ______. It is better having seen him come to Christ Jesus. It is better because I got to know his family – a family that is made up of truly honest people who love one another mightily.