Summary: Saying good bye to a sister who had fought the good fight.
1. Here today to pay our final respect to....., to remember her life and how it touched ours, to share in the hope in which she lived her life and which, for her, has now been realized.
2. In reflecting upon their mother, the family chose the passage we read from 2 Timothy as one which would well-describe her life.
1. Paul knew that his life would soon be over as he writes these words to young Timothy, his spiritual son.
2. Paul saw his whole life as a offering to His Lord and Saviour - he poured out his life in service to God and he knew that he would soon make the final sacrifice, as perhaps within a matter of days he might be killed for his faith.
3. He says that the time has come for his departure. The word here refers to a loosening of the ropes when taking a tent down or to the release of the lines when a ship leaves the dock.
4. Paul saw himself as a soldier for Christ, gathering his tent for the next stop and as a sailor launching out on a new journey. He knew that his life would not end with His physical death. ( So did..)
5. ... could look back over her life and say with Paul that she fought the good fight and finished the race.
6. Paul compares his life and service to athletics. We see some athletes who go through the motions or those who are in it for the money and don’t give their all. Paul says he gave his all and finished that course that had been set before Him.
7. Like a marathon runner - he kept going no matter how steep the hills, how strong the wind against him, how much his body cried out from xhaustion, no matter how far away the finish line seemed to be. (personal comments)
8. She fought for weeks until last Thursday.
9 And she kept the faith - she lived in the belief that God had called her to be His child and servant and she put her trust in Him - not wavering from the fact that God would be true to His promises.
10. While she may have wondered at times whether or not she was good enough, she came to that point where she knew that through the grace of God displayed on that cross she would be received by God as holy and righteous.
11. She believed that she would receive the crown of righteousness that Paul speaks of - the wreath awarded to the victor of the marathon race.
12. We need to consider one important thing that I believe she would want you to know - the crown goes not just to Paul, not just to ..., but it goes to all, as Paul ends this passage, who have longed for Christ’s appearing.
13. Crown is not a reward for passing a certain standard of excellence or effort, it is a gift from God to all who believe that Jesus Christ gave His live on the cross and that whoever believes in Him, trusts in Him, will receive eternal life - for that is what the crown represents.
14. It is not that service that gives us the prize but Christ.
15 We thank you God for our mother, grandmother, friend and we thank you for Jesus Christ through whom we share in the glorious hope we have.