Saturday, October 27, 2012

Graveside Service - Miriam Johnson, Oct. 20, 2012

Dust to dust.  When God created the first man, Adam, He created him from dust.  When Adam died, his body was reduced to dust.  So it is with all of us.  And as Eve was created to be a help meet for her husband, so Mom was a true helpmate for her husband.  God blessed the couple with six children, of whom I was number two.  Middle child syndrome runs strong in my veins.  Although I didn't appreciate it at the time, I now know what a task it was to raise six ornery kids, home schooling for many years, and giving each of us a lot of individual attention.

I have good memories of time spent with Mom.  She loved to read to us when we were small.  We would crowd around her on the couch at night and she would read Bible stories.  She was an accomplished pianist and tried unsuccessfully to teach most of us to play the piano.  She loved crossword and jigsaw puzzles.  I am not sure, but she may have even enjoyed home schooling us.  She was a good teacher, but I am sure I tried her patience.  Most of all, Mom prayed and worked tirelessly to see her children come to salvation in Jesus.  When I said goodbye to her last Sunday, although unable to talk, she was lucid, and smiled when I told her we would meet again.  Yes, the circle will be unbroken.  Gathered here are not only her children, but we have grandchildren and great-grandchildren here as well.  My challenge to each of you: don't break the chain.  Pray your children into the Kingdom.  Nothing would please Mom more.

Although we are sad, we do not mourn as others, who have no hope, because Jesus said, 'I am the resurrection and the life.  He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live.'

The last year and a half of her life, Mom suffered from mind-debilitating dementia.  Last week she couldn't speak or move her arms or legs.  Now she can dance and sing the praises of her Savior with a mind that is clear and sharp.  She is reunited with her parents, her husband, a baby she miscarried, and best of all she is with the King Who she served during her sojourn on earth.

My parents, like Abraham of old, went out, not knowing where they were going.  They waited for a city which has foundations, whose builder and maker is God.  Now Mom has seen the city, she has seen God.  Now Mom is home.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


After living 88 years and 9 months, my Mom finally passed from this life to a new one this past Tuesday.  Although death of loved ones make us sad, as Christ-followers we have a hope which others cannot have.  When God creates a soul, it will never die.  When Jesus walked this earth three days after He had been crucified, He proved that He had the power over death.  Those who trust Him will live forever after leaving this earthly body.

Mom was ready to go.  Her mind was ravaged with Alzheimer's disease, and in her last days was in hospice, since her body would no longer process food and her immune system was gone.  This past Sunday I said goodbye to her.  She was unusually lucid as Paul read from the Psalms.  Although she could not speak, her eyes were open and when I told her we would follow her one day and meet together in Heaven, she was actually able to smile.  I was told that for the rest of her life, she was mostly unconscious until she finally shed her body at 9:30 Tuesday morning.  We can only imagine the glorious reunion in Heaven.

My memories of my mother are good ones.  As the apostle Paul speaks approvingly of Timothy's mother, Eunice's teaching him the Scriptures from an early age, so Mom taught her six children.  It had to be very difficult, the first 5 of us were born less than 18 months apart.  But her patience and loving, careful discipline was exemplary.  Much of our schooling was at her feet, since we were home schooled before it became popular.  More than academics, Mom taught us character.  And yes, we were characters!  Most important to her, Mom wanted us to not only learn about her Savior, but to know Him.  The prayers of both my mother and father have been answered.  I am sure I speak for each of my brothers and sisters when I say, 'Mom, we will meet again.'  The chain will not be broken.