A Different Kind of Bible Study Today

CommunionThis morning, instead of the usual Bible Study at 9 am, we gathered together an hour later to attend the funeral of a lovely woman who joined us each week to study God’s Word and pray.  I didn’t know her well, but she was a kind, thoughtful, joy-filled woman I was happy to have known.

The church was nearly packed with people from all walks of life and a great diversity of faiths.  And yet, while her life was truly honored, Jesus was central to it all.  Today I took communion alongside Catholics, Lutherans, Presbyterians, Methodists, and Baptists–it was moving.  Today, life and death brought us together and reminded us all that while knowing one’s faith is important, knowing Who one’s faith is based upon is really the only thing that matters.  As each person rose from their pew to join the line of partakers, personal distinctions and preferences were set aside in the name of unity and solidarity.  Each person accepted communion out of love for a dear lady and in recognition of Christ, giving His life to the hands of death that we might live and walk in the Life that was restored in His resurrection.

It is in this hope that we came.

It is in this hope that we ate and drank and remembered.

It is in this hope, with hearts full of mourning, that we left that place.

We may have come empty, but because of love, we left filled–only to be emptied out, and filled again.

Sometimes there are holy blessings that we can only experience as a result of death.  Today, in funeral communion, I was blessed.  I’m so grateful that this godly woman chose to have her funeral speak as fully of her Savior as she sought during her life.  She pointed me to Christ even in her absence.

As I reflect on my time at her service today, my heart is thankful.  For today, I met God once more, and His presence filled my soul.

Thank you, Shirlene, for a beautiful life and a beautiful death.  This was the best way I can think of to spend our last Bible Study together.

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