Thursday, January 8, 2015

Jesus Loves Me. This I Know.

I am not sure I can get these words typed out but I am sure going to try.

Your many prayers for mercy have been answered.  The Father above graciously received Herb Stuart last Sunday evening, somewhere around 9:15.  It was a moment of glorious and God breathed peace as we praised the Creator for taking Herb home.  But the mercy didn't stop there.  Through the week as arrangements were made, meals were brought, children were cared for, and funeral words were prepared, we were bathed in mercy and grace.  As we somehow stumble forward, we know the path is one where God will be extra tender towards us all.

The funeral yesterday was simply amazing.  I thought the three brothers powerfully gave God-given words that not only honored their father but pointed to the Heavenly Father.  I couldn't be more proud of them in that moment.  I didn't feel like anything was lacking or should have been added.  They used the time they had to sum up their precious dad and to point us all to a greater vision. In some strange and bittersweet way, it will always be one of my favorite days.

I have nothing to add to their words, but I wanted to share one small story.  I share it because Herb was never one to hold onto truth. He freely shared all, and so even though part of me wants to cherish this memory as my own, the other part says that it might bless you too.

Last Friday, the day we knew that the end was upon us, was my hardest day.  I cried literally all day long.  God was gracious in allowing me some time with my sweet father in law.  If you know me at all, you know I can't speak a word when I am all emotional and snotty.  So, I thought I would get him speaking and then maybe I could blubber out some of what was down deep in my heart.

I asked Herb if God had been teaching him anything new on his 7 month journey of battling cancer. (Yes, it was a selfish question but I needed to soak up everything that Jesus had been to him these last months.)  I guess I was expecting some long sermon or some new Greek or Hebrew word, but he shocked me. It went something like this...

Yes, I have been thinking about God a lot lately.  But, more than that, I know God has been thinking about me.  You know, I  just can't conceive how much the Father loves me.  It is just inconceivable to me.  I know He loves me and I am so thankful, but goodness, I just can't grasp the depth of it.

How beautiful that in Herb's last days, the Father's affection towards him is what stayed in his every thought.  A wise man's theology and deepest ponderings were all the sudden summed up in a simple children's song. 

Jesus loves me.  This I know.

"As for man, his days are like grass:  he flourishes like a flower of the field; for the wind passes over it, and it is gone, and its place knows it no more. 

But the steadfast love of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear him, and his righteousness to children's children, to those who keep his commandments."

Psalm 103:15-18

Thank you for always pointing us to the Father's heart, Herb.


kathy (bigsis) said...

Oh Becke, no words - just rejoicing that Herb is feeling the full measure of his Father's love for him in person.

Peace to your family.

Leslie said...

The funeral was beautiful. The boys reminded me to be aware of the legacy I'm leaving. We loved Herb dearly. He always called me "Singer." One of my favorite memories of him was when I was about 38 weeks pregnant and showed up at church in a wild print dress probably looking like a house. He saw me wobbling down the hall and raised his eyebrows. He put his hand on my shoulder, looked smilingly at my tired face, and said, "I don't think that dress was meant to be shared, Singer. Wow." Ha! I said, "I oughta slap you Old Man." He laughed and walked on down the hall. Yes, he was not one to hold on to the truth! =) Prayers for you as you go forward from here.

Cassie Booth said...

Thank you for sharing this Becke. I tried many times to visit him in his last weeks but he was too weak. I appreciate so much knowing what he was thinking and feeling. Love y'all so much!