Today’s Reading: John 16:19-20 (NIV)
19 Jesus saw that they wanted to ask Him about this, so He said to them, “Are you asking one another what I meant when I said, ‘In a little while you will see Me no more, and then after a little while you will see me?’ 20 I tell you the truth; you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices. You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy.”
We have lots of family photos displayed in the parsonage. Precious moments, captured from days gone by: these are the ones we know and love, some who have gone on before us to be with the Lord. Every morning as I sit down and write, I am surrounded by the people I love captured in photographs on my computer table. My friend Meredith is here, along with Pastor Slagg and my mother, aunt, cousin, husband and children. The children we feed in Nicaragua are smiling back at me, and our eight year old Melvin, a young man from El Salvador whom we’ve sponsored now for almost four years. These are the faces of the people dearest to me. When I look in their eyes, I can see Jesus clearly.
Yesterday afternoon, we had a princess party at the parsonage. Our granddaughters Emily and Madison came over to play with Granny Deb and Pa. We dressed up in pretty jewelry and shared snacks and tea together. In the kitchen, four year old Emily stopped by the refrigerator to admire the picture magnets and art work decorating the door. Next to the faces of our five beautiful grandchildren, is a drawing of Jesus, our Super Hero, a photograph of my husband Jeff sitting in his favorite reading chair, and a picture of my parents, taken when they came to visit our family in Texas twenty-eight years ago. Emily was identifying all of the faces on the fridge, when she suddenly stopped, looked up and exclaimed, “Nanny, look! There’s Gigi and Great Grandpa!” Without hesitation, she said: “Great Grandpa is with Jesus, right Nanny?” I smiled at her and said, “Yes, Emily, he is.” She replied, “Nanny, I just miss him so much.”
Little Emily never knew my dad. He had passed away eight years before she was born.
Jesus understood that when He died, His disciples’ grief would be overwhelming. He also knew that their joy would be made complete when He rose again. For what they could not see clearly now, they would one day know and understand in full. We miss the One whom we’ve not seen with physical, earthly eyes. He is with the Father in glory, and we know that He lives and reigns and works within our hearts. One day soon, we will see Him again, face to face. Like Emily, I miss my Jesus so much. His earthly, human life ended long before I was born, and yet, He lives in my heart. More than a photograph in a frame, Jesus is alive! And I have His Word that one day soon, I will be with Him and the Father in heaven, forevermore.
There’s a face on your fridge this morning, smiling back at you. Look closely; can you see the One you love?
Grace and peace,
Faith UMC - St. Charles, MO
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