How I spent my summer vacation.

It has been a tumultuous couple of weeks. My mother in law passed away, unexpectedly, a few days before our Arizona vacation. So all plans were canceled as we dealt with the fall out.

It was the first funeral my children had ever attended, so that was an educational opportunity for us. They experienced their first death as adults and learned about a whole set of emotions they never knew they had. When my mom passed away many years ago the kids were all quite young and we kept them from the funeral. All they really remember is how sad I was for a week or two. Now they understood why I would just break down and wail for ten to twenty minutes back then. I rode that emotional rollercoaster for all it was worth, and then I was done. My sister said she wished she had done that. Instead she kept it all in and she thinks that has had long lasting emotional effects on her wellbeing. I am not sure about that, but I know that God, our Creator, gave us emotions, and the emotion of losing a loved one to death is very powerful. Death, from the beginning, was not natural but sin gave us death. I wasn’t going to try to be strong enough to fight it. I just gave into the emotion. That was one of the lessons I conveyed to my kids. A deep love results in a deep hurt.

My in-laws are from a Jewish tradition so that means the funeral is quick (within 48 hours of the death). They also have traditions for the family after the funeral to help the family cope with the loss. One is to keep our focus on The LORD and the other is to make sure our immediate needs are met. Things like food and comfort.

After a funeral, your worldview tends to get recalibrated. Things that were important before the loss that were really unimportant take a back seat to real life events. You have just spent the last three days being told that your loved one has gone to heaven by people who never new your loved one. In the Jewish tradition they believe all Jews will go to heaven so they try to numb some of the pain with promises that your loved one will be with you in heaven one day, so don’t worry, they are in a better place. But as a Christian, I don’t believe that has a biblical foundation. I reached out to my mom-in-law a number of times, and she said that she sort of believed Jesus was the Messiah, but didn’t have time to really check out his claims. She never cared about God and never owned a Bible (Jewish version or otherwise) and when I came into the family I recal her saying she broke every Commandment, and was proud of it. I call that rebellion, not worship.

Now my dad-in-law is left holding on to hope that he will join her in heaven and wants to be reassured. I have invited him to Sunday service with me so he can learn what the Bible has to say. To me, it is more important for dad to learn the truth than to appease his fears until his day comes.

(Heb 2:9-17 NIV)  But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone. {10} In bringing many sons to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the author of their salvation perfect through suffering. {11} Both the one who makes men holy and those who are made holy are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers. {12} He says, “I will declare your name to my brothers; in the presence of the congregation I will sing your praises.” {13} And again, “I will put my trust in him.” And again he says, “Here am I, and the children God has given me.” {14} Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might destroy him who holds the power of death–that is, the devil– {15} and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death. {16} For surely it is not angels he helps, but Abraham’s descendants. {17} For this reason he had to be made like his brothers in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people.

 

Well, that is how I spent my summer vacation.

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5 Responses to How I spent my summer vacation.

  1. therealgirlscout says:

    I am so sorry to hear of your loss, hybrid. Please accept my condolences and I will keep you and your family in my prayers.

  2. hybridtalk1 says:

    Thanks.

  3. mzkatie says:

    I’m very sorry, Hybrid. Thinking of you & your family.

  4. princess says:

    ditto hybrid……..

  5. Hacksaw says:

    Very sorry to hear about the recent loss of your mother in law, & your Mom way back then.

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