Saturday, March 21, 2015

Streets of Gold

My grandparents with Zachary at 10 months - October 2008
My Grandma passed from death to everlasting life during the night. I can't feel sad for her. I'm picturing her running, dancing, and hugging Jesus. She's with her Savior today! Don't get me wrong, I'm grieving for those of us left here on this earth, and I miss her, but I'm so glad for her. My grandma loved the color gold - jewelry, purses, clothes, shoes. Once, she even had a pair of jeans with gold threads woven through them. It makes me smile to know that she is enjoying the streets of gold all around her today! 

Earlier this week, I was praying for her and for my Grandpa and my parents, and God brought to my mind a phone conversation that Zachary had with my grandma about two years ago when she was first diagnosed with cancer. I remembered writing (but never publishing) something about it, and after some searching, I was able to find it and thought I would finally share:

"My Grandma was recently diagnosed with cancer.  They caught it early, a little spot on her lung.  They only need to do some targeted radiation, no chemo yet.  But still, cancer is a scary word.  A scary thing.

I’ve been meaning to call her.  The phone rings, and I am able to sit and talk a minute, amongst kids playing.  She tells me the ‘plan’, and how God has brought her through this far, and she trusts that He will bring her through again.  I manage, barely, not to cry while we’re talking. 
 
The kids want to talk.  I hand the phone to Zachary.  He talks about the stomach flu we’ve had, and what toys he’s been playing with, and then they talk about the cancer.  I know it seems weird that a five-year-old would know about cancer, and truthfully, he has no clue, but he knows that when you have cancer, you are sick.  We pray for our friends and family with cancer.  

“You have cancer?” he asks. “Taylor has cancer, and she has to take medicine that makes her more sick for a while, and it makes her hair come out.”  He listens to what Great-Grandma has to say.  I can’t hear her side of the conversation, but I assume she’s explaining about her upcoming radiation treatments.  Soon he responds, “You’re not scared?”  He listens again while she shares the faith that her 80-some years walking with God have brought her to.  And I try not to let him see me crying.  

We are so blessed to have this heritage, passing down this faith from generation to generation.  Lord, let me not neglect the relationships between myself, my children, and the older generations in our family.  Remind me of their importance, not only to encourage those older relatives, but in passing that wisdom and deep-seated faith to me and my family in the process.  

This conversation hit me once again and I was teary-eyed while singing the song, “How Great is our God” (by Chris Tomlin) in church this morning, and I knew I had to write about it.  Here are the lyrics that spoke to my heart:

Age to age He stands
And time is in His hands
Beginning and the end
Beginning and the end

How great is our God, sing with me
How great is our God, and all will see
How great, how great, is our God."

Grandma and Natalie at 4 months - April 2010
After hearing this week that my Grandma was so close to passing away, God gave me this verse to encourage my heart: "In peace I will both lie down and sleep, for You, Lord, alone make me dwell in safety and confident trust." - Psalm 4:8. I know without a shadow of a doubt that my Grandma laid down in peace this week, and slept in safety and confident trust, and woke up in Jesus' arms, whole, in her brand new body! That picture is such an encouragement to me! I'm praying strength and encouragement for my Grandpa during this difficult time, and also for my parents with all the arrangements that need to be made. I know we would all appreciate your prayers! 

Grandma and Davey at 5 months - December 2011
 **Friends, if you don't know without a doubt what would happen if you passed away today, I'd love to talk with you about it! Is there really anything else that matters more than this??**