It seems that as Christmas approaches we think about those friends and loved ones that have passed on. This year my husband and I said good bye to his Uncle Claire, one of my co-workers Sharon Fitch, my Aunt Faith and now a very dear friend of ours Padre Geoff Hopper.
As sad as it is to say good bye to these people I feel confident in my faith in God that they are all in a much better place. My cousin told me a phrase this summer while were visiting the graves of our Grandma & Grandpa Sharpen and our Uncle Ralph Sharpen -- Absent from the body, Present with the Lord. This phrase has given me much comfort as I have had to say good bye to loved ones. It doesn't make it any easier to say good bye, but it does help in knowing that they have gone on before us to a much better place where they are re-united with loved ones gone on before and that they now feast at the table of our Lord, Jesus Christ.
I think of my Grandma & Grandpa Gardner and how much I miss them but I have the comfort in knowing they are with the Lord, watching over me and my family. I know my mom watches over me & my family along with Grandma & Grandpa Sharpen.
My best friend Cheryl, died at 16 years old. She faced her destiny with such bravery and a strong faith in God. I remember her telling me the last time I seen her that she was going home to be with the Lord very soon. She was so looking forward to seeing her loved ones that had gone before her and to meet Jesus and walk and talk with him. She told me I won't be sick any more I will be with my loved ones. When I hugged her for what I knew would be the last time I had tears in my eyes, she told me don't be afraid for me. It will be many years but we will see each other again and I will be there to great you. When I walked out of that hospital room knowing that the next time I seen Cheryl it would be at her funeral I was sad.
Over the years my faith in God & Jesus Christ helped me realize that one day we would see each other again and I would re-united with my loved ones as well.