**Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. ** Psalm 23:4
Many years ago, I visited my great aunt a few short months before her death. I was a young Christian and also the youngest female of the family so I did not have much opportunity to speak with her, I was only able to sit and listen. I was struck by her peace, her acceptance of the inevitable, the understanding that her health issues were bringing her life here on earth to a close. At the end of our visit, as we each said our farewells, I drew close to her and mentioned to her, as the others were heading to the car, that Psalm 23 is a comfort to many.
She looked at me with surprise in her eyes and told me that Psalm 23 was one of her favorite Psalms and yes, that it did bring her great comfort. Soon after our visit, I received a letter from her and my Uncle. They were both thrilled to know that we shared the same faith. They had spent many years alone in their faith within their family unit, rejected by siblings and their offspring, for their dedication to Christ. They were kind and humble farmers and faithful in their allegiance to Christ until the very end.
My aunt did not fear death. She welcomed it. Her only concern was leaving my Uncle behind for a season. She understood that in her last moments, she would not be alone. The Lord would be with her, helping her to cross over into paradise. She passed over a short time later, but we were able to correspond several times. I cherish their letters in the same way as one would cherish letters from Biblical patriarchs.
My Aunt and Uncle spent their lives sharing their faith and serving others. They were strong, yet humble in their convictions and principles. They were an example to me on how to walk humbly with their God.
There is no fear in love. And Christ´s love is complete, ever present, healing and sustaining. When our time here on earth comes to it´s final hour, we need not fear. Christ will not change in those last minutes. He will be at our side, strong, kind, gentle, comforting and will give us peace for the journey.
What waits for us on the other side is almost beyond description. We are only given hints to what it will be like. The river of life that flows from the throne of God, the rainbow of colors that lighten the heavenly city, the golden streets, the visual presence of our God….
**But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.** 1 Corinthians 2:9
It´s beauty, it´s peace, it´s glory and brightness is beyond our imagination. But my Aunt and Uncle know all about it. As does our friend Eric, our nephew Nathan, my friends Evie and Robin, my cousins Matt, Carrie, Stevie and too, too many of my friends´ children. But none of them are at this moment in fear, all have been welcomed and loved and given the golden tour of the most beautiful place that exists.
We need not fear death, because we will not face it alone. It is the one thing that we can count on. God’s presence and help on our darkest days. That is worthy of praise!