Saturday, August 16, 2014

Each Life That Touches Ours For Good

At the service of my beloved poppers a true and trusted friend was speaking.  He started by paying tribute to my poppers and what a great and inspirational man he had been to him.  He then shared with us that as we were singing one of my poppers favorite hymns his eyes had drifted to the hymn sharing the page entitled "Each Life That Touches Ours for Good":

"Each life that touches ours for good. 
Reflects thine own great mercy, Lord;
Thou sendest blessings from above
Thru words and deeds of those who love.
What greater gift doest thou bestow,
what greater goodness can we know
Than Christ-like friends,
whose gentle ways
Strengthen our faith, enrich our days."

With my profession I am blessed to interact and create special bonds that will carry on through mortality and into the next phase of our journey back to our eternal home.  Each and everyone has inspired me in the brief moments of time we spent together.
Today I would like to honor  a few of those "noble and great ones." 

I have met and visited with many different clergy and many have left footprints in my heart.  Some I have not had the pleasure of meeting again as of yet here but there is no doubt in my mind we shall meet again.  Pastor Paul is a Pastor of a local non-denominational local church and works for the same company I work with so I am blessed to interact with him frequently.  He is such a humble god fearing man.  He greets everyone he meets with extended hand, quick smile and eager hug.  I was not surprised as he shared one day the he at one time was a man of the world and headed down a destructive path but he during his darkest moments came to know and find his Lord and Savior.  "I was lost but now I'm found."  Oh how I love this great man!
I also met a Baptist Preacher who was woven out of the same clothe as my beloved Pastor Paul.  He had an addiction to drugs and found his life spiraling out of control when he too found his way back to his Lord and Savior.  He too is a humble and meek man that reaches out and welcomes and loves all the "outcasts and lepers."  As I listened to him speak I kept thinking of our beloved Savior and who He ministered to, "all ye who are heavy laden....come and I shall give thee rest."  Another was a pastor of a non-denominational church.  He "hath no form nor comliness...there is no beauty..."  Just being in the presence of this humble man was an inspiration to me.

"For worthy friends whose lives proclaim
Devotion to the Saviors name
Who bless our days with peace and love
We praise thy goodness 
Lord above."

Most the Grand-mas and Grand-Pa's I sit with were god fearing and each and everyone of them had left a remarkable spiritual legacy for their posterity but they also had that one child who at the time did not wish to partake of their legacy and filled their hearts with sorrow.
Each and everyone of them had stories told on how they went beyond the call to deliver bibles to all their Heavenly Brothers and Sisters.
I have been invited to numerous bible groups and bible studies which when I was able to go edified and uplifted me.  I was surrounded by "Christ like friends whose gentle ways strenghten my faith and enriched my days."

The posterity who are left behind have also inspired me and I have shared some remarkable conversations with them which have inspired me to deeper reflection and ponderings.
One conversation I shared was with a parent whose son had committed suicide.
One of her closing comments to me during our conversation was, "You're still young one day you will understand."  I had made the comment that I could not understand why the love that surrounded my brother was not enough to keep him here.  I have been reflecting on her comment a lot and I am starting to just now understand what she meant.  As we said our good-byes with tears in her and my eyes she wrapped her arms around me and thanked me for allowing her to talk: "When you have a loved one who commits suicide you find there are none to talk to that really understand what you are going through. Thank you!!  For the first time I have been able to share my feelings and thoughts to one who understands."  She will be another I know I shall meet again and she will meet my brother and I can meet her son.  I hope that my brother was there to meet her son and he has shared with him how he began to learn and heal.

Another that touched me was a dear dear daughter who stayed an entire 19 hour shift with me to keep me awake as we sat with her beloved mother.  Oh how I love her for her sacrifice and willingness to help me a stranger who became a friend.  We talked through the night sharing tears of joy and sorrow-.
She had been a teacher and then made this profound comment, "I am in hopes that all the years I taught I touched at least one child."  She then wistfully looked away and commented, "I guess I'll never know." I then shared with her an experience that I had had.  I related to her a story about how I knew I had touched this one persons life and the joy I had felt at being able to do that.  It was years later I learned that by touching that one persons life I had caused a "ripple effect" and so many other lives had been touched.  It was a powerful moment for both her and I.  Then I related to her that one day there was not a doubt in my mind we would see the "Fruits of our Labors."  It will always be a cherished memory the time I spent with that remarkable woman.

Lastly I would like to visit about another daughter I have had the privilege of meeting.
This amazing woman has inspired me and touched me in a way different manner.
This beautiful woman was diagnosed with breast cancer a few years ago.
She went through endless bouts of chemo and got so very sick and then she had surgery in which she was told she was "cancer free."  One could only imagine her joy and relief.
Then a short year later she once again became sick.
Upon returning to the doctor she found out that not only had she not been cancer free the cancer had become aggressive and had spread.  More bouts of chemo and surgeries and loss of hair and sickness; only to find out she would have to be on chemo the rest of her life cause they could not stop the spread of the cancer.
Two things struck out at me as she offered me her hand and introduced herself to me.
Her bright and shining eyes and her wonderful head of beautifully colored hair.

Right away she told me how much she loved my hair.
 I joked with her about people having a love for "silver hair."
She smiled and shared with me that her hair had once been long and thick like mine but with the chemo she lost her hair.  She then smiled and gushed "but I have gotten my hair back and so far it has been a keeper!!"  I then shared with her how beautiful her hair was to me.

With that amazing sparkle in her eyes she then shared with me her stories of how she is the queen of notoriously falling.  With glee in her voice she shared with me each and every "Face Plant" because when she falls she lands right on her face.
Her laughter made me think of the laughter of angels it was so musical and soothing.
We were laughing so hard I told her that she needed to write a book to which she giggled, "agreed!!"
I then lovingly told her that she needed to consult a plastic surgeon about her face plants and her need for a few nips and tucks.  That caused a case of laughter.

This woman holds an extra special place in my heart because she is more than aware that her time here is a precious blessing and she greets each and every day with an abundance of positivity, smiles and love. She has chosen "not to shrink."  I know that one day when she is called home our beloved Savior will be there with outstretched arms, "Come unto me, ye blessed, there is a place prepared for you in the mansions of my Father."

"When such a friend from us departs
We hold forever in our hearts
A sweet and hallowed memory
Bringing us nearer Lord to thee."

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