Saturday, May 20, 2006

In sure and certain hope

Yesterday I took the funeral of a friend we had known for nearly twenty years, a member of our church who battled with cancer for over 40 years due to a genetic predisposition. Her suffering now over it was a joy to preach from John 11 on our sure and certain hope of resurrection from the dead when we trust in the One who said, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. ” Preaching such a message was not difficult but controlling my voice when I read the verses of comfort at the start of the funeral and also at the crematorium was a problem for me. Jesus wept at Lazarus tomb so weeping at funerals is not a concern, except when I am trying to lead the service and my voice is going. Professional detachment I have not, nor stiff upper lip. "Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted...For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd; he will lead them to springs of living water. And God will wipe away 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.” Sure and certain hope indeed.

3 comments:

organiclemon said...

Graham what a profound experience leading the funeral must have been. You did something very special and very real-as you say no stiff upper lip -just a real friend doing his bit.
Physically you may have said goodbye but your life experiences with this lady will stay with you forever to cherish.
G-d bless you.

Anonymous said...

Three weeks ago I buried my beloved wife. She died with her trust in the Lord. She too died from cancer and spent a long three years dying. The minister conducting the funeral service afterwards said he had never experienced such an uplifting service. "So full of hope." I am sorrowing as you obviously are. We are not told not to sorrow, but rather not to sorrow as those who have no hope. God bless

Graham Weeks said...

May our God of resurrection hope, comfort and strengthen you.