Tyla’s mom, Nancy, has been battling cancer for three years and very early yesterday morning, we got the call that she had passed away. As adults, it’s a lot to deal with, but it has also been a big challenge to guide a four year old through it.
Who knows what really goes on in the mind of a four year old, but he seems to be taking this all in stride. For the past couple months, I’ve been preparing Elijah for the death of his grandma. He knew she was sick and we talked about how some day she wouldn’t be around anymore. That was hard for him to understand, but what he did understand that she was going to join Jesus in heaven. There have been a number of times when he has walked over to a crying family member, stood there quietly and said, “It’s ok. She’s with Jesus now.” Oh the faith of a child!
We are all comforted knowing that Nancy is in heaven right now. There are still a lot of tears as we come to grips with the fact that we’re not going to see her again here on earth, but the separation is temporary because we’ll be reunited in heaven. Nancy knew that she was a sinner and deserved only God’s wrath and punishment. But when Jesus died on that cross 2000 years ago, he paid for her sins and she believed that. The Bible says that anyone who believes and is baptized will be saved. It really is just that simple. Heaven is our free gift and requires zero effort on our part (thank goodness because I know I’d screw it up if any of it depended on me!) Reject that message and the result is much different.
If you’re in the area, you’re welcome to attend the funeral on Friday at 3pm at Calvary. Don’t expect to hear how Nancy was “a great person” or other common funeral quotes. Instead, you’ll hear something like what I wrote above: Nancy was a sinner like all of us, but when she died and stood before the judgement seat, God declared her not guilty, not because of anything she had done, but because Jesus had already paid the debt for her sins and she believed that.