Summary: This is the message I preached for our 40-year-old son. I hope it can help give comfort to other grieving parents. I preached about Heaven because that is where our Eric is.
Funeral Service for Our Son, Eric Crandall
(Preached May 25, 2021)
*This is the message I preached for the funeral of our 40-year-old son who died on May 21, 2021, after a brief but terrible illness. This sermon is intensely personal, but I hope it can help give comfort to other grieving parents. I preached about Heaven because that is where our Eric is.
SONG 1: "He's Always Been Faithful" by Sara Groves
THANKS: On behalf of our family, I want to thank you for being here today. Thank you also for your many prayers and other wonderful expressions of love.
*ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT REASONS WE ARE HERE TODAY IS TO REMEMBER ERIC'S LIFE.
*But first, let me say that Eric's death was a real mystery. We don't know for sure, but Eric may have been one of the people who had a terrible reaction to the Covid vaccine.
*Two weeks after taking his second dose, Eric began to have multiple health problems. Over the course of 11 days, he went through extreme nausea, dehydration, potassium deficiency, migraine headaches, excruciating pain in his legs, two seizures, a possible heart attack, possible meningitis, and platelet depletion.
*In the end, Eric died of heart failure. And though he was seen by at least 7 doctors in 4 excellent hospitals, they were never able to determine what was causing his problems. So, from a human point of view, Eric's death was a big mystery.
*But from a godly point of view, from a Christian point of view, we are quite sure that the Lord was ready to take Eric home to Heaven. Job 12:10 and Daniel 5:23 both tell us that our very breath is in the Hand of God. And we know that in God's perfect wisdom and plan, He was ready for our son to go to home to Heaven.
*Here's what Becky wrote about her brother: "Eric's entire life was a testimony of God's grace and his healing power. In July 1992, he was diagnosed with what should have been a terminal brain tumor; yet, God said "no." In what could only be described as a miracle, the Lord gave him nearly thirty more years to pour into his friends and family. (Truly there were many miracles that took place when Eric had that brain tumor.)
And two years ago, Eric became an even clearer picture of God's ability to restore broken vessels when he rededicated his life to Christ. The past two years have been filled with laughter, love, and even more importantly, a legacy of faith. Glory to God alone!"
*WE ARE HERE TODAY TO REMEMBER ERIC'S LIFE. BUT WE ARE ALSO HERE TO HELP FIND COMFORT FOR OUR LOSS.
*We always need God's comfort when one of our loved ones passes away. But there is unique sorrow in the death of a child. It seems unfair, out of order, upside down. We were supposed to go first.
*Where can we find the comfort that we need in times like this? -- The best place we can find it is from God. 1 Peter 5:7 tells us to cast all our cares on God, because He cares for us, and He really does care!
*You may wonder how the God of the whole universe could relate to the pain we are going through right now. But our Heavenly Father knows what it's like to go through the death of His only begotten Son. And Isaiah 53 tells us that Jesus was a man of sorrows, well-acquainted with grief.
*Also remember that when Jesus was here on earth, sometime along the way, His stepfather Joseph must have passed away. The Bible doesn't give us the details, but we never see Joseph again after Jesus was 12 years old.
*From John 11, we also know that Jesus wept after His friend Lazarus died. And yes, the Lord knew that He was going to raise Lazarus again from the dead, but Jesus wept with those who wept, because He cared about them. And He cares about us.
*God really does understand what we are going through right now, so we can keep "casting all our cares on Him, because He cares for us." Day by day, the Lord will continue to give us the comfort and strength we need. That's why 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 can say, "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation. . ."
PRAYER: Let's ask the Lord for His comfort right now as we go to God in prayer.
SONG 2: "In Christ Alone / Cornerstone / The Solid Rock" by Caleb and Kelsey
*One of the best things we can do today is focus on Heaven, because that's where Eric is right now. And that's where we will be too if we have received Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior.