Summary: Funerals for the unbelieving is a difficult task for preachers. It is, however, an opportunity to be an encouragement to the family as we honor the good aspects of the deceased person's life.
Song – No Tears in Heaven – Seating Guests
Song – Home of the Soul – Family Enters and is Seated
Congregational Song – Sing Hallelujah
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.
3 He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
for his name's sake.
4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
5 You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD
forever. Psalm 23
Obituary and Prayer
Family Members to Speak –
• Jesus Hold My Hold My Hand
• Amazing Grace
It is an honor to be part of this service in which we honor John.
In discussing the service with Kay, I was reminded of several passages from the book of Proverbs. As I have reflected on these, I saw several applications to John’s life.
13 Blessed is the one who finds wisdom,
and the one who gets understanding,
14 for the gain from her is better than gain from silver
and her profit better than gold. Proverbs 3.13-14
ALL of us make mistakes; make bad decisions; sin
ALL of us feel the effects of our decisions – good and bad
We have a choice in our circumstances:
Stay down or Learn from our errors and move on
Apparently John learned some lessons and was able to move on – a wise thing to do
John learned some priorities and was able to see the unimportant and could say, “Just let it go.”
He learned, as a result, to be slow to anger:
He learned the impact of the “Serenity Prayer”
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.
In college, he wrote an English paper on How His Life Was Different from 5 Years Ago. In it he wrote of how he had made some bad decisions but that he was currently making honorable ones and showing honorable actions; He had a type of new start for his life in turning from bad choices to good ones.
Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge,
but he who hates reproof is stupid. Proverbs 12.1
The Army was helpful in the area of discipline for John, especially in regard to his appearance:
Clean shaven; buttoned down shirt; dressed for success – “Co-workers asked, “Are you looking for a job?”
His Discipline Led to Accepting Responsibility for His Life
Many people want to live life blaming others for failures or losses
Others will accept responsibility and pass it on to others
He exhibited Discipline in his Education
Illness stopped him from achieving some of his goals
He was a strong learner – achieved mush on his own through reading
Gained his GED
Hear instruction and be wise,
and do not neglect it. Proverbs 8.33
An intelligent heart acquires knowledge,
and the ear of the wise seeks knowledge. Proverbs 18.15
Love not sleep, lest you come to poverty;
open your eyes, and you will have plenty of bread. Proverbs 20.13
Began working at BC Steel Buildings at age 16
Boss saw potential and taught John key aspects of the business
He was able to develop building skills and activities
Did the work on plumbing; electricity; roofing (although was not fond of popcorn ceilings)
He had a “whatever it takes” mentality to get things done
Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might – Ecclesiastes 9.10
IV. Loving Toward Family and Friends
Hatred stirs up strife,
but love covers all offenses. Proverbs 10.12
Not Demonstrative or Emotional but deep down loved – which fits his personality as quiet and introverted
In Army he supplied electricity for medical units – he was not performing the medical procedures but was supplying something necessary for them; he was doing something important behind the scenes
He loved his parents; children; step-children; grandchildren – was always available; “Fishin’ Grandpa”
Enjoyed the singings with Kay and grandchildren
Always wanted the family together on special occasions and holidays
Storms of Life
Stresses; Job Losses; Illnesses; Loss of loved ones
Disciples feared the storm on the Sea of Galilee – woke Jesus – “Peace Be Still”
Jesus has the power to calm the storms of life