Tuesday, June 14, 2011

oh, to be found in the garden

"I come to the garden alone, while the dew is still on the roses...
And the voice I hear falling on my ear
The Son of God discloses.
And He walks with me, and He talks with me,
And He tells me I am His own;
And the joy we share as we tarry there,
None other has ever known.
He speaks, and the sound of His voice,
Is so sweet the birds hush their singing,
And the melody that He gave to me
Within my heart is ringing."

My dad sang this song at my Grannie's funeral back in January after a brief battle with cancer. I remember, she passed  in the wee hours of that Friday morning. Saturday was pretty much a blur. We held a memorial service for her that Sunday evening. Earlier that day before the memorial service my dad asked me to help him by typing out his speech that he would deliver at the service. I know he probably only asked me because he knew I could type quickly, but I took it very personally. I felt so humbled that he asked me to do it. Even though it was to be read out loud and be made public later that night - because it hadn't yet been delivered, in a way, it was still in the rough draft stages. It was still personal to him. I was amazed at his delivery of the gospel. He shared the Love of the Lord the way that Grannie had lived it.

Meanwhile, the peace with which he gave this plan of salvation (no easy task considering he had just laid his mother to rest) was simply sweet. He sang a sweet hymn that she had asked him to sing - the same one he sang as a boy at his own grandmother's funeral. I remember the way he sang that song with such sweet surrender to the Holy Spirit. He sang with such a heart of praise. Just the manner that he composed himself taught me so much about life.

The words of the song just echoed over and over again,
"...and He walks with me, and He talks with me, and He tells me I am His own..."

I just felt such a peace of mind knowing that Grannie at that moment was forever bound to her Savior. She was hearing face to face that she is His forever Love. She had met Him in the garden to walk hand in hand. Oh what peace!

Death affects us all a little different. There in itself lies the most unnatural thing that has ever occurred to us as humans - the great separation - it is truly what it feels like. It is a mock example of what separation from the Lord is - true spiritual death. Only the gift of the Lord's salvation can make this proverbial heart whole. And so it is with physical death. Only having the free gift of salvation by grace through faith can place us in the security of knowing we will see that loved one again.

No body wants to talk about this so much when that passed on loved one maybe didn't have a relationship with the Lord. This is the dilemma. If they were indeed loved one's - are we loving them truly by letting them go without sharing the love of the Lord? May we never let an opportunity go by that we don't share God's gift of salvation - whether it be to a loved one or a total stranger.

So, as you may be reading this, please know that you too, can meet Him in the garden one day. You don't ever have to experience this great separation. Likewise, if you have already surrendered yourself to The Redeemer, you are now called to be a minister of reconciliation.

For all have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God. And the wages for sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Amazingly, God showed His love for us in this: while we were sinners, Christ died for us. And whoever believes in Him will not perish, but have everlasting life. (Romans 3:23, Romans 6:23, Romans 5:8, John 3:16)

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