A friend passed away this past Wednesday. She was a wife, a mother and an inspiration to a whole community here in South Jersey. She was our pastor’s wife. To say that she was an inspiration to her would have made her blush. She would have shooed away such a statement and would have said that the glory is all God’s.
I know there to be truth in both arguments.
Her memorial service was held today. There were approximately 700 people that came to the service from all around the world. Lives that she had touched, people that she had met and shaped in some fashion along the way. In her life and in her family she put Jesus first – everything else fell into place from there. This is what I most desire for my family, as well; a Christ centered home. Her husband – our pastor and their children live for and shine for Jesus Christ. Bottom line. Their testimony is where the rubber hits the road for us – Christians, that is.
“God’s word means everything or it means nothing.” Our pastor said this at Sunday services. These words have echoed in my mind and heart. He is absolutely right. There is nothing clearer than this – it is black or white; no gray at all. The words of Jesus from John 14:1-3, “ 1Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. 2In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.” Christ’s words either mean everything in ones mind, heart and soul or they mean nothing.
“God’s word means everything to me.” Pastor said.
I remember first coming to Calvary Chapel in Vineland. Tammy was one of the first people that we met. I remember her as our Christmas Choir director. We all met every Thursday from September to December. It was a daunting task keeping everyone straight and on target but she did. The noises we made were joyful ones (at least that is my sincere hope). It was a time I will never forget. I remember how she loved her family – her children and grandchildren. She always lit up around kids or with a child in her arms. I remember how she loved her husband and how he loved her. The two were well met along the path, so to speak and made an amazing team. I remember how she reflected the heart and love of Jesus Christ in her life – it was palpable, real; one could sense it. What more can I say? There is nothing greater.
God called one of his children home. I celebrate her life and miss her presence here yet still John 14:1-3 rings true. A place was prepared for Tammy as soon as she accepted Christ as her savior and now she home. Psalm 116:15 says, “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.” Someone precious has been called home and, as one of her beloved grandchildren said, “there is dancing in heaven.”