Dear Friends-

My wife and I begin our day with a reading from Our Daily Bread. You had suggested for your readers to offer thoughts or experiences they might have had. I have a personal account that I experienced a while back.

My friend Larry and I are in our eighties. A few months ago before church I was in Fellowship Hall. Larry came up to me and said, “Sit down. I want to talk to you.” As we were seated, he said that he had been to the doctor the previous week. The doctor said that he had a life-threatening condition. He then leaned forward toward me and said, “I’m going to meet Jesus before you do.” Tears welled in my eyes, and I didn’t know how to respond.

As time passed , Larry’s condition grew worse. Eventually he was put in Hospice Care, and today (7/17/2016) he died. I think of him now as providing a wonderful expression of a gentle passage from this life to eternity. He has met Jesus face-to-face. “For me to live is Christ and to die is gain.” (Php. !:21)

Larry was an Elder in our church, and he continued to serve as long as he was able. He would always follow up with people in need in his own parish as well with others who, needed help.

As the end drew near, Larry made sure that provision was made for his wife. He met with our pastor, and planned the arrangements for his memorial service.

We all have experienced the death of someone we loved. It’s so hard to realize that we’ll never see them again – in this life. As Christians we grieve, but we have the assurance that we will be united once again. I sometimes wonder about those who don’t know Christ. The void in their lives can’t be filled in this life or the next.

309This Encouraged Me

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