Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Unless a seed....

Steve and I went to the funeral of a good friend and neighbor yesterday.  She passed away on Saturday after a long fight with breast cancer.  Today I have been feeling sad and flat.  Strange how you process sad news.  I find I try to grip myself when I know something is coming, but when it happens, it doesn't seem real; I  feel numb for a little bit. Then sadness hits at various moments of the day. Great sorrow for Kim's husband over takes my heart.  I can't imagine Dale without Kim.  They were like 2 peas in a pod.  How will Dale bare it?   How would I bare it if it were me?  Not very well.  But of course the grace of God is real, tangible and powerful.  It is that power that works in us, when it seems impossible for us to go on.  It is here with us.  It is here with Dale.

We told Eddie about Kim.  He knew it was coming too, but I think when we are young the inability to understand or grasp the reality of those things is even stronger.  Eddie was taken aback.  His first question to Steve was "How is Dale?"  That was so precious for Steve and I to hear.  It really touched our hearts.  Yesterday Eddie called us on our cell phones after the funeral;  he said.  "How is Dale?"  That was a double for Eddie, who more often than not doesn't seem to notice the world around him in his adolescent cloud.  This blesses me.

Life and death are a mystery.  They are everywhere and all around; sometimes in the obvious such as I have just talked about, and in the  not as obvious, like the grain of wheat; like our life  as Christians, which dies progressively to "self", and lives progressively to "redemption".   Dying has seemed to me lately like giving birth; pain and travailing giving forth to a new life.  For Kim that new life is in Heaven.    I see so many changes in the earth these last few years.  More death than I ever remember.  I don't quite know how to take it in.  For some we can rejoice, and for others, it is great sorrow.  Every time I hear of a movie star or someone famous dying, it grieves me greatly, because their death has not necessarily translated them into new life.   I don't worry about Kim's soul  I know where it is, but I find my heart heavy for the world.  I am reminded how my Heavenly Father gave the life of His only begotten Son so that those who believe in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.   The symbolism is everywhere; I have often marveled at how death reigns in the winter, but life reigns in the spring.  Out of hard dead sticks come soft supple buds, new leaves, new life.  I understand it,  and yet, it is a mystery.

The hospice nurse was a friend of Kim's from previous days, and the Lord  brought her to be Kim's hospice nurse.  She told a story at the funeral that blessed us all.  She said that as the end drew near, Kim whispered to her to get Dale (who had been up all the previous night, and was now sleeping while Kim's Mom and the nurse took the shift).  As the nurse turned to go get Dale, she  looked up and saw an Angel of the Lord; yes, an Angel.  And then he began to ascend.  Kim said "hurry".  Dale came quickly to Kim's side and was able to be with her those last moments; and that was the end. It was very comforting to think of that Angel there to assist Kim to Heaven.  What a treasure.

Dale and Kim standing next to Russell and friends and family  at his going away party last year.

"Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone ; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.


  1. Pam...Thank you for sharing your heart, even at such a time. I'm glad that you know the Lord and can experience His peace in the midst of these circumstances. Persevero!

  2. I am so sorry to hear about your friend Pam but praise God that she was a friend of Jesus and is now home enjoying His presence forever and that you will all be reunited with her one day. I love what you said about God's grace being tangible - to me that means something that can be taken hold of. I pray the coming weeks will be full of tangible grace for you and the family of your sweet friend.

  3. Sad for you. Sad for Dale. But thankful that you do not mourn as those without hope. I know what you mean about 'processing' sad news. After the death of our friends' son, I went through real weeping, numbness, and then...just heaviness. 'Blessed are them who die in the Lord.' Remembering you all at this sad time. This world is so full of sadness (joy too, but so much sadness). One day, He will wipe away all our tears. Thanks for sharing this. I'm going to re-read it x

  4. Thank you so much for stopping by and your sweet comment.

    Oh, my heart goes out to her husband as well. An elder in our church lost his wife this past fall, and it has been so hard for him to learn life all over again without her by his side. It is comforting when we know our friends and loved ones are now in the presence of our Lord, but to adjust to the life without them here, is hard. The Lord knows what these men need, and will help them continue until it is their time as well.

    God bless you, I do look forward to reading more here on your blog.

  5. Oh I am so sorry to hear of the passing of your friend...Prayers go out to her family and to you during your time of sorrow. What an amazing story you shared. We often forget about angels don't we. But the bible is very clear about them ~Thanks for sharing. Praying!! ~Love Heather

  6. Hi Pam,
    This post really touched me. I too have been having a real hard time imagining Dale without Kim. The last time I saw Kim she wasn't sick, so it is hard to believe that she is no longer here. I just found out this week that my Aunt is in round 2 of breast cancer. Seems like it's all around us. I have been wondering if it always was and I just never knew, or if more and more incidents are happening as Christ's return draws nearer. It's so difficult to understand...

    I am very eager to hear more about the angel. I've heard similar stories amongst my family during the death of a Christian. It makes me feel comforted. Even though I know that I will not be alone, my mind tells me that I will and for me this is the most frightening part of death. I'm not sure that I've ever done anything alone in my entire life and the thought of entering eternity that way terrifies me. Remind me to ask you more about the Angel's details when we talk.

    Thank you for the update. Dale is in our prayers.