Run Jane, Run!!
I believe that is what we would have heard last Friday when the doors of heaven opened up so this beautiful 79 year old woman could be reunited with her husband and to finally see her Jesus face to face. I think she got there, said hello, then asked where He was. The crowd of witnesses waiting for her pointed her in the right direction and began to encourage her to move those now very strong legs. I think she took off. Running. She was at the finish line.
If the truth be told, she really started running a couple of weeks ago. She knew she was dying and wanted desperately to leave a legacy with her son and grandchildren. She knew Jesus, but she wanted to be baptized to show her family that it was important to her. She wanted them to know Jesus too. A week ago last Sunday morning, her son Rick, his fiance and his best friend were baptized. Michael had visited with them and knew their commitment to be real. Their emotion was unbelievable. It was almost as if we were intruding on a very intimate time as we watched each of them go down below the water.
Then that afternoon Michael and I left Mom and Sandy here at the house to get ready for our big church family cookout while we drove to the nursing home to meet with Jane and her family. The staff there had prepared their jacuzzi tub and Rick wheeled his sweet momma down so she could be baptized too. Michael, Mark, and Rick lifted her fragile body up and into the tub. It was beautiful. When she was settled back into her chair, covered with blankets, and the oxygen back on, Michael explained how her baptism was a picture of the resurrection. She said, "I'm getting there before ya'll! I'm leaving all my troubles behind. Ya'll have fun!"
Yesterday Rick stood at his mother's graveside and unashamedly told everyone there they needed the Lord. He said that his dad had been gone 45 years and that his mom had grieved a little every day. That she raised her two children as a single parent as best she could. He commented that she had lived with her demons but that the last weeks of her life were different. She was different. She ran the race strong those last few weeks. She had crossed the finish line. He told us that as he was driving over to the cemetery that afternoon a song came on that he felt was from the Lord. Victory in Jesus. Yeah, I'm pretty sure it was from Him.