Wednesday, January 29, 2014

On A Day Like This

In 2013, a number of persons, well known and close to my husband and I, went home to be with the Lord. While we grieved and mourn their absence in the flesh, we continue to give thanks to God for their lives, their testimonies and the legacy they left behind.

At midnight on Saturday, January 25th, my mind was flooded again with the memories of these departed and loved ones. I received alerts both on my cell phone and IPad reminding me that my dear friend’s birthday was forthcoming in a few days. Since that day, I have received several more notifications. I do my best not to miss my friends’ birthdays but this is one birthday I was not looking forward to. She is no longer here to celebrate her birthday.

I was in a dilemma.  What can I do on a day like this when I can not call or send her a message to wish her well?

Keeping Memories Alive:
If it were possible, I would have loved to visit her graveside and lay some flowers there. But I am here in Geneva and Sally (Funmi Adewole) was laid to rest in Chicago. Yes, I know she is not there. She has joined the cloud of witnesses in heaven and she is in a better and more glorious place. A place that we must all long for and look forward to going. Because Heaven is the reward of the believer.

Perhaps, we could all come together, all of us who were friends with her and share the memories of our times together with her when we were at the University in Ibadan. But we are all spread around the world. Surely, on a day like this, it would have been great to be in the same room with Tola, Mowunmi, Shandy, Smiler, Titi, Toyin, Bukky, Bola, Muyiwa and many others.

Maybe, I will read again the story of her legacy shared by her husband and friends, watch the video of her last sermon in church, or remind myself of the things I wrote about her.

It is a good time for me to consider how I can be a part of keeping her memory alive. See A Legacy of Good Works.

Those Left Behind:
On a day like this, when loved ones who have departed would have been celebrating their birthdays, what do you do? If I feel this way, I cannot begin to imagine how the spouses and children of such departed ones would feel on such a day as this. Three of them come readily to mind: Bro Bayo and his children, Grace Q and her children, and Coach T and his sons.

I wondered how they will cope on such a day like this. I was quickly reminded that Our God is a Father of all comfort, full of passion and everlasting love, He is able to keep their hearts at peace. He is there with them to wrap His warm, loving and comforting arms around them. He holds them so close to His chest and He soothes them with His warm breath.

At such times of loneliness and deep longing for the touch and presence of the departed one, God is there to be everything they need. He is able to fill the void. At the time when the children ask, “Why?” He gives wisdom to find the right words to respond to them. And He gives the grace to carry on.

They are in my thoughts and prayers today, and indeed, have been throughout this week.

For them and the rest of us, the lesson we can take away from the testimony of the lives of these departed ones is that, our time here on earth, no matter how short or long, must be applied to doing the things that count by God’s standard. Being fully persuaded that God has left us here on earth at this time for a purpose. Our chief aim and goal must be to walk in the fullness of that purpose.

For us let behind, we can thank God for the assurance which we have that we shall see them all again when we meet at the Father's throne in glory.

When The Saints Go Marching In

We are traveling in the footsteps
Of those who've gone before
But we'll all be reunited
On a new and sunlit shore

Oh when the saints go marching in
When the saints go marching in
Oh Lord I want to be in that number
When the saints go marching in

Oh when the trumpet sounds the call
Oh when the trumpet sounds the call
Oh Lord I want to be in that number
When the saints go marching in

Praying For Some in Particular:
Three of these departed ones have one factor in common. They were afflicted with cancer. So, on a day like this, I remember my friends who are at this time dealing with this destructive disease. I stand on the authority of God’s word and declare that the word of God is sent forth to heal them and deliver their bodies from destruction by cancer. I hold on to the horns of the altar and entreat the Lord on their behalf that the power of God to heal will be at work in them.

Perhaps, you too can join me to stand in the gap for them.

On a day such as this, I choose to pause and ponder. I choose to re-evaluate my walk with God and where I am in the assignment He has called me for. He delivered me from the jaws of death almost 9 months ago and I know this new life He gave me is for a purpose.

I resolve in my heart not be found wanting in fulfilling that purpose and to be ready when He calls me to my home on high. I've got my mind made up and I won’t turn back because I want to see my Jesus someday.

I dare to ask you today; Are you ready?

“Be thou faithful unto death and I will give thee a crown of life” – Revelations 2:10

This post is dedicated to the loving memories of three of our friends who went to be with the Lord in 2013:

Funmi (April 17th, Chicago), Chedra (Sept. 25th, Geneva), Bahati (Dec. 5th, Tanzania)

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