Summary: Funeral for a believer that died in her sleep.
THE GIFT OF SLEEP AND REST
“Unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain. In vain you rise up early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat– for He grants sleep to those He loves.”
We have come here to honor the memory of ****** who was called home by our Heavenly Father. This passage of Scripture in just a few words, ’He grants sleep to those He loves,’ gives us such a great and mighty promise from God. I would like to remind you today that she is merely sleeping.
When we use that word ’sleep,’ we usually think of those times when we are physically exhausted and need to rest our bodies. The Bible uses the word ’sleep’ many times when talking about death. Throughout the Old Testament, when someone would die, it was described as ’sleeping with their fathers.’ In the New Testament and especially in the early church, when someone would die they would be described as ’sleeping in Jesus’ (1 Thessalonians 4:14).
Why do I tell you all of that? Psalm 127 tells us that God grants sleep to those He loves. He loved ***** and she loved Him. ***** trusted in Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior for over 70 years. She trusted in the promises of God. One of those dearest promises, especially in times like these, is that God takes care of us after this life.
We sleep. For ***** she went to bed one night and did not physically wake up. Yet, she did wake up in a place far removed from here. She awoke in a place that no one can even begin to dream about. She awoke to find herself in the presence of the Almighty God and cared for by His Son Jesus Christ. She awoke to find her hurts gone. She awoke to find her tears wiped away. She awoke to find her husband and other loved ones beside her who were already with God. She awoke to find herself in Heaven.
It is my heart’s prayer that all of us who are gathered would realize that we are here celebrating the gift of sleep that God gives after a lifetime of faithfulness. One of life’s most difficult things is saying goodbye to someone that has loved us so much. But God gives us the strength to let them sleep when we put our faith and trust in him. God gives us the ability to see that this sleep is the only way of claiming God’s eternal promise of Heaven.