He hung up the phone, walked into the kitchen where I was making a pot of chicken soup, looked me in the eye and said, “I have to go to Virginia this weekend.”

He had just been talking with his dad and his mother isn’t doing well. The fluid is building up around her heart. Her legs are swollen. She can no longer walk, even with her walker. She is sleeping a lot.

It is too soon. For me. Too close to the one year anniversary of my own dad’s death.

Too many similarities. Too many reminders.

All of our days are numbered, but she probably has fewer than most of us.   

Since we moved out east 7 years ago, John has made an effort to get down to see his parents every 6 weeks or so. It is a short drive of 5 hours and much closer than he had been since he left home at 18 and traveled west 400+ miles to attend college. Back in the day where there were no cell phones. No e-mail. No instant communication. Maybe he called home on Sunday evenings, maybe he didn’t. I don’t know. 

After college he took a job even further west. 

When we got married, we tried to get back to his hometown a couple of times a year. We saw his family in July when we all met for a vacation. Moving east has allowed him more visit with his family.

I feel that the end of her days is nearing.  While those left behind may be sad, I know she will find peace.

And rest.

And comfort.

She will no longer be dependent on others.  She will walk without aid.

She will be at peace.

And those left behind will learn to live life without her.

The righteous perish,
    and no one takes it to heart;
the devout are taken away,
    and no one understands
that the righteous are taken away
    to be spared from evil.
Those who walk uprightly
    enter into peace;
    they find rest as they lie in death
Isaiah 57:1-2 
(emphasis mine)

My mother-in-law is a righteous women. She knows the Lord and is a prayer warrior. And one day, probably sooner than I would like, she will walk the streets of gold and say hello to my daughter and my dad.

Max Lucado writes in  
A Gentle Thunder Hearing God Through The Storm 
“Could death be God’s grace? 
Could the funeral wreath be God’s safety ring? 
As horrible as the grave may be, 
could it be God’s protection from the future?” 

To those left behind the grave doesn’t 
seem like a safety ring.
But I find comfort in that thought.  
Do you?


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