Sunday, September 5, 2010
This is what I wrote and read at my grandpa's funeral today. Still can't believe he's really gone...
On your last night here on Earth, I had the privilege of staying overnight in your hospital room with you and Grandma. I sat there watching you softly breathe in and out, and I stayed up most of the night because I didn't know when God wanted to take you home. As I tried to pass the time, I started reading a devotional book. I immediately felt God's presence, and I found peace from reading this passage in the book: "Death can temporarily remove us from those we love, but it transfers us into the presence of the One who loves us most."
From that moment on, I have had an incredible peace. As much as we all wish you were still with us, it's so comforting and exciting to know we will see you in Heaven someday. Until then, we can remember all the great memories, and everything you have taught us.
If it weren't for your strength, and your passionate faith in God, we wouldn't be the people that we are today. As your grandchildren, we remember the times we'd be gathered together as a family, and you'd get up to talk to all of us. You'd have many great and wise things to say, but it all came down to this: Love God and live for him. You told us that if we do that, nothing can stand against us. Thank you for teaching that important lesson to us!
You have always been so proud of us as your children and grandchildren, and we couldn't have asked for anything more special than that.
I know that now that you're gone, things are going to be different. The day you passed away, we went to your house for dinner as a family. I walked in your front door, and immediately saw the change already happening, as Steven was sitting at the table teaching Noah how to play chess, just like you had done many years ago with me, and several of my cousins over the years. Change is good, and needs to happen in life, but it's definitely going to take some getting used to. I want you to know that even though you are gone, you are living through each and every one of us as your children and grandchildren.
I keep going over all of the special times I was able to be with you and learn from you. For many years, you were the one to read the Christmas story from the Bible before we opened presents. This taught us as your grandchildren that we should never lose sight of what really is important, no matter what the world is telling us.
I want you to know that I look up to you so incredibly much. I pray that one day I will have the patience, love, and strength that you had. I never once saw you get angry. I never saw you give up faith, or fail to show love and compassion to anyone. You lived the kind of life that God called us to live, and I thank you for showing us how to be what Christ wants us to be. Thank you for your love for all of us, and your love for Grandma. You two set the perfect example of what marriage should look like.
Grandpa, we all have so much to learn from your life, and I want you to know that your legacy will live on for years to come. I can't thank you enough for all you've done in our lives. I miss you so much, and I love you more than you'll ever know. I'll see you in Heaven, Grandpa.