Summary: Funeral for a believer who suffered a long illness
ONE OF THE HARDEST THINGS
This is certainly not an easy time to go through. The death many times takes us by surprise, but it also can be an expected outcome. For *****, it was the result of a long illness. But that does not take away the hurtfulness of this time. This time is full of hard things.
One of the hardest things to do is watch one we love deteriorate physically. We see them drift away and it breaks our hearts. It becomes a trial. We have questions. We wonder what to pray for. We wonder about the time of their death. We wonder about their comfort and what they are thinking. It becomes a trial for them and for us. James 1:12 tells us, “Blessed is the man who perseveres
under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.” We know that Don has received his crown of life and we are so thankful for that.
One of the hardest things to do is see one we love in pain or discomfort. We wonder how they are feeling. We wonder if we can do more for them. Sometimes pain is part of life. However, there is a place where pain and tears and death are not even an issue. Revelation 21:3-5 tells us,
“And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ’Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.’ He who was seated on the throne said, ’I am making everything new!’ Then he said, ’Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.’” We know that ones we love may be in pain in this life, but all of that has passed away in Heaven and God has made all things new.
One of the hardest things to do is mourn. God tells us that we have so much hope that this time. God tells us that we have so much comfort and support at this time. God tells us that we have celebrating to do at this time. And it is one of the hardest things to do. 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 says,
“Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. According to the Lord’s own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage each other with these words.”
We do have promises from God that are cause for celebration:
* We know that after this life, it is glorious life with God forever for those who believe