Monday, February 16, 2009
Gone for awhile
This past weekend during the L’Abri conference where both Denis and I participated as speakers, I received news of my dad’s death early Saturday morning. He suffered much during the last few months of his life and so his departure was that mixed blessing people speak of. He was my mother’s second husband, so my step-father…my father was someone I never knew - he was killed in a plane crash a few months before I was born. After me came five more children. It’s been a comfort to me that some of my siblings who live near Mom have been helping, loving, keeping vigil with her and Dad these many weeks. Years, actually, as it was eight years ago when he had a stroke that disabled him and took away his ability to speak, though not his thinking.
Today, Denis and I are preparing to leave on the 8 hour drive that will take us north almost to Canada where much of my family still lives.
Unaware of what it might mean to me, Denis threw me a heart line during his plenary session when he reminded us of Samwise Gamgee from Lord of the Rings who, when he saw Gandalf after the last battle, asks in utter surprise and joy: “I thought you were dead! But then I thought I was dead myself! Is everything sad going to come untrue?”
Then, Denis quoted Tim Keller (I think.) who said: “The answer of Christianity to that question is – yes. Everything sad is going to come untrue and it will somehow be greater for having once been broken and lost.”
For my family who mourns this particular death, but for all who grieve, I pray God will give comfort. I look forward to that glorious time when Christ returns to regenerate and renew all things. Then perhaps, both my fathers will stand to bless me, my husband, my children, and grandchildren in a way they could not in this life.