Sunday, August 19, 2012

"Death Dew and Glittering Crown"

My Jesus, I Love Thee

I'll love Thee in life, I will love Thee in death,
And praise Thee as long as Thou lendest me breath;
And say when the death dew lies cold on my brow,
If ever I loved thee, my Jesus, 'tis now....
In mansions of glory and endless delight,
I'll ever adore Thee in heaven so bright;
I'll sing with the glittering crown on my brow,
If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, 'tis now.

Two weeks ago early Sunday morning I stood beside a hospital bed in my parents' bedroom and watched the death dew on my beloved Daddy's face, heard his struggles to breathe as he slipped away to heaven. He got his glittering crown, I'm absolutely certain! I'm also just as certain that he's not wearing it. He placed it at the feet of Jesus and now he's living in the place that God has prepared for those who love Him! If ever a man qualified to be and live in heaven, it's Edward J. Robeson III, my Daddy! NOT because of ANYTHING he ever did or said. He qualifies for heaven because Jesus gave him the ticket in and made a place just for my Daddy to live forever! (James 1:12, John 14:3; John 3:16, Rev. 4:10-11)

Saturday, August 18, 2012

A Boulder on My Chest!

Not doing so great with blogging these days - too far behind and not enough time ahead ... ! Just not moving as fast as usual either - just plain tired! Suddenly came to me this AM that maybe (novel thought for me!) giving in to the tired (not too much but just a little) might be a very productive thing to do as in about 7 days I'm back to 4:30 - 5 AM wake-up calls and back in the grind of school until next May!
So, in lieu of any of my thoughts, here's a real treat from Nancy Guthrie about grief - blessed me so I'm hoping you'll be blessed too!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Real Hope and Change!

Scotty Smith posted the words of the Messiah He comes to make his blessings flow far as the curse is found. Then he observed in his post: There's no broken place Jesus' doesn't own as his.
WOW! Those words just jumped out and grabbed my heart! The flow of the effects of the curse (Genesis 3:14-24) fill the earth, all creation and into every crack and crevice anywhere!
Lately I have been "mourning" my dear Daddy's death Aug. 5. It is a HUGE loss! AND it's ALL because of the curse! There was no death and dying until there was sin! There was no pain until there was sin! There were no tears until they was sin! It stinks to the 10th power!
Jesus the Great King and Conqueror comes to make all things new! He DOES makes His blessings flow far as the curse is found!
Brokenness is the reality of life. It is found in too many forms to count! Buried in the brokenness of life is total hopelessness and impossiblity to change without Jesus the Kingly Conqueror who makes all things new! He brings real hope and change forever!
No more let sins and sorrows grow, nor thorns infest the ground;
He comes to make His blessings flow far as the curse is found,
Far as the curse is found, far as, far as, the curse is found.
He rules the world with truth and grace
And makes the nations prove the glories of His righteousness,
And wonders of His love, and wonders of His love, and wonders, wonders of His love.
--Isaac Watts, Joy to the World
Thank you, King Jesus, that there is NO broken place that You don't own as Yours! It's the ONLY hope for change!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Worship in the Face of Death - Dying Well!

He looked more dead than alive gasping for breath with oxygen cannulas in his nose. His eyes were closed as he lay in his hospital bed at home in his own bedroom. He was surrounded by his wife and sweetheart of 68 years, his five hugely loved children and their equally loved spouses along with a couple of grandchildren. We were all singing hymns. One grandson played his violin.
My sister and I stood on either side of him - our deeply loved and respected father. Each of us had a hand on his arm.
Someone requested "Rock of Ages." We began to sing. It was NO angel chorus! Except for two or three, none of us would ever be mistaken for a singer but we were all singing from our hearts. Almost from the first word my dear Daddy mouthed the words to each verse. He could hardly speak so we could understand him but he could sing "silently" with us. It was more than obvious that the words were resonating with his heart and his deep, deep love of Jesus, the Rock of Ages. He knew better than we did that his time on earth was drawing to a close. His sights were more on heaven that on this world.
It brings to mind Matt Redman's 10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord):

O my soul, O my soul - Worship His holy name! Sing like never before, O my soul! ...
Whatever may pass, and whatever lies before me; let me be singing when the evening comes!

Bless the Lord, O my soul! O my soul, worship His holy name!
Sing like never before, O my soul! I'll worship Your holy name!
You're rich in love and You're slow to anger; Your name is great, and Your heart is kind.

For all Your goodness I will keep on singing - Ten thousand reasons for my heart to find ...
And on that day when my strength is failing, the end draws near and my time has come
Still my soul will sing Your praise unending - ten thousand years and then forevermore!
... I'll worship Your holy name, Lord! I'll worship Your holy name.
Sing like never before, O my soul. I'll worship Your holy name, Jesus.
I'll worship Your holy name, sing like never before ... I'll worship Your holy name!

I looked down into that dear, dear face and saw something I had almost never seen there before - there were tears leaking out of the corner of each eye. He wasn't crying for himself. His tears were for me and all of us he was leaving behind. He knew he faced a far better place where he truly and forever would be worshipping his Jesus. He also just had to know what a huge hole in my heart his leaving would make. We all agree it's very hard to imagine a world without him but life goes on even when there is loss and pain and we too worship Your holy name Jesus!
In the face of dying, he worshipped with us. In the face of dying, he taught us the last great lesson: how to die well!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Death Really Isn't the Big Bad Wolf!

You get the drill: Who's afraid of the Big Bad Wolf? I'll huff and I'll puff and I'll blow your house down. So he huffed and he puffed and he blew the house down.
That's how death is for many - It's the Big Bad Wolf coming and blowing the house down! Death REALLY, really isn't the Big Bad Wolf! Death really, really doesn't have to blow the house down. Death comes knocking on the door and Death is knocking on the door of this house today. It may be today. It may be tomorrow as one day soon Death will come to take my dearly loved Daddy away into eternity but the house won't fall down because we all know we will see him again - straight and tall, no Parkinson's, no pain, no subdural hematomas, no brain surgeries, no hospitals, no intensive care or doctors or morphine. All that stuff goes away in eternity!
When my thoughts fly away I start thinking about a world without Daddy and I barely can. But when it's all said and done, the house (as in family) will stand because we stand together in the strength of the One Who conquered death and Who promises to make all things new! (Rev. 21:5)

Friday, August 3, 2012

In the Midst of Life ...........

No blogs since July 17th. Sorry but it's all about death in the midst of life..........
My heart and body have been totally absorbed first with a wonderful visit from three hugely loved grandchildren. And then, the day they returned home I got a call on my way home from taking them that my 91-year-old father with rapidly advancing Parkinson's had a subdural hematoma. He had emergency surgery that night in Greenville, SC.
We've done the intensive care bit and then a private room. They (the hospital folks) were wonderful partially because they do their job well and also because my brother is a consultant helping them develop their hospital system technically, philosophically and in leadership and team concepts.
[Just a side-bar: He's gotten a real upfront and personal look at life in that hospital system in the last 8 days.] From the private room we moved to a two-room suite. Since there are 6 children with spouses, 21 grandchildren (all but three with spouses) and 29 great-grands, we are a formidable crowd! AND since there are no cabbages in the bunch - well, you get the drift!
Long story short is that the sub-dural (which was very large) caused pretty extensive right-sided weakness and just seemed to my dad too high a mountain to climb. He is ready for heaven and wants to go there. He's getting his wish as we brought him home several days ago under hospice. As I try to put the sequence into time it seems like it's been a year since Wednesday, another since Monday and two or three since last Thursday!
This journey is one of the most amazing experiences of my life! Trust me that my life has been filled with many varied amazing experiences. My youngest sister posted on her FB page this week that this day ranks right up there as one of the worst. For my money it seems like this week has been filled with worst days - if that's possible!
Through it all there are wonderful snapshots of amazing love and tender grace! Here's just one for tonight: Earlier this week when Daddy was still taking tiny bits of liquid, I was giving him a few drops of coffee. Our granddaughter Abby, 10, touched my arm and asked if she could give it to him. I handed her the spoon. It was so precious to see her tenderness and love - a picture I'll carry in my heart!
It is so strange and wonderful being on this island of death in the midst of life and traveling this journey with my dear brother and sisters and their spouses and our children and children's children! This is a treasure beyond telling! Sola Deo gloria!