Encouragement at the Funeral of A Baby…
I would like to share some encouragement this morning with you all:
A. God loves everyone—the Bible is clear on that. But in the stadium of Jesus’ great love, it is also clear that children have special seating, have preferential box seats, have an almost exclusive section right up front.
B. God’s Word—the Bible—on numerous occasions records Jesus shattering social custom as a rabbi by emphasizing the importance and specialness of children. Jesus lavished attention on children, taking them into his arms, sitting them in his lap, and blessing them. He even went so far as to teach those around Him that NO ONE can enter the kingdom of heaven unless they have faith like that of a little child. Wow. Children are indeed honored by God.
C. And so, it is encouraging to me that right now, at this VERY MOMENT, this beloved child is in a “better place,” yes. But even more than that, right now, at this VERY MOMENT, this child is sitting in the lap of Jesus Himself, gazing into His eyes, surrounded by the glory of glory, the source of life, the Beginning and the End, the Alpha and the Omega, the Creator and Savior of the world–the Lamb of God Himself. This child is glimpsing—not with faith, but with her new physical eyes—the smile of Jesus. This encourages me greatly…
D. I am also encouraged by the truth in Scripture that we humans have been made for another world; this place, as great and as wonderful as it can be, was never meant to be our final home. This child passed through this boulevard of broken dreams all too quickly, but I am encouraged that she is right now HOME, resting in the arms of God Himself, never to be touched again by the sting of tragedy, death, pain, suffering, disappointment. As this child is in her true home, let us remember that heaven is also our true home as well. May we here who believe this truth in our minds also live our daily lives as if we believe it. C.S. Lewis stated wisely that those who make the biggest impact on this world are those who are most focused on the next world…
E. Finally, I am spectacularly encouraged by the outpouring—the veritable deluge and tsunami—of love, support, and encouragement over the past three days by all of you. You have brought a smile to the face of Almighty God, you have filled His heart with Fatherly pride, as you have surrounded the grieving families with your love, patience, generosity, warmth, and perseverance.
F. It is not surprising, though, that the grieving families have accumulated such a rich treasure of loved ones over the years, for they themselves have been treasures to all of us, wonderful friends and confidants.
G. But please let me close by reminding all of us that one of the best ways we can continue to honor the memory of this precious child is to continue to love her parents and family. Our response has been amazing the last four days; but our continued response will be essential over the next week, month, year, and decade. May we make the choice to continue to tangibly love and support this amazing couple and their families as long as it takes this terrible wound to heal…
H. Please allow me to close with some more encouragement from God’s Word:
Revelation 21:1-7 NIV:
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the old heaven and the old earth had disappeared. And the sea was also gone. And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven like a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.
I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, “Look, God’s home is now among his people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them. He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.”
And the one sitting on the throne said, “Look, I am making everything new!” And then he said to me, “Write this down, for what I tell you is trustworthy and true.” And he also said, “It is finished! I am the Alpha and the Omega—the Beginning and the End. To all who are thirsty I will give freely from the springs of the water of life. All who are victorious will inherit all these blessings, and I will be their God, and they will be my children.”