Do you believe this?
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?”
Ed and Lucille were married for over 75 years.
Ed died in March and, for the first time since World War II, Lucille was separated from the love of her life.
She would only end up being separated from Ed three months. Lucille died in June and was reunited with Ed in heaven.
This was part of the message that I shared with Ed and Lucille’s family and friends.
Last March, when we last gathered together here, I talked about how Ed & Lucille were “connected” just as they – and we – are connected to God through Jesus Christ.
This time, however, I share with you something about Lucille that also tells us of Jesus Christ.
Lucille loves Jesus. She was so faithful in her prayer life, praying to Jesus every day.
Lucille loved singing. In fact, she picked out the hymns for us today, actually handwriting the words from memory!
This was something I picked up on from Cathy and Barb [Ed and Lucille’s daughters].
Butterflies are very colorful, very beautiful, and very graceful. We could describe Lucille the same way.
Lucille was somewhat of a “social butterfly”, especially for Jesus! She and Ed served as “Shepherds” of new members at St. Matthew Lutheran Church years ago – one of their “sheep” is here today – my mother, Pam King. I’m so grateful and give thanks to God that Ed & Lucille where there to welcome my mother to her new church home so many years ago!
Lucille was very active until a few years ago. When I first started to visit them Lucille was a very gracious host, always providing coffee and pastries for me.
But as Ed’s health weakened, so did Lucille’s ability to be as social and active.
Still, I think of Lucille and butterflies because of the significance of butterflies in Christian symbolism.
The butterfly is a symbol of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Just as a caterpillar metamorphoses into a cocoon and finally emerges as a beautiful and graceful butterfly, so Jesus Christ lived for 33 years as a human being, then died on the cross and was buried in a tomb.
He emerged three days later as our glorious and triumphant, and grace-filled Lord and Savior.
Lucille slowed down drastically the last year or so. When her beloved Ed was called home by Jesus, I could tell that some kind of light went out of Lucille’s eyes. She was slowed to a caterpillar’s pace the last three months.
Lucille will be hidden away for a time now. But on the Last Day – because of Jesus Christ – Lucille will emerge from her grave a graceful and beautiful new woman, a butterfly of a woman, as we are all reunited in heaven.
In John 11 a woman named Martha was distraught and sad that her beloved brother, Lazarus, had died. She points out to Jesus – who was a close family friend – that if He had been there, Lazarus wouldn’t have died.
Jesus doesn’t answer that statement, doesn’t contradict it or confirm it, but rather comforts Martha with the words, “Your brother will rise again.”
And so we are also comforted with the same, blessed assurance.
Because Jesus is “the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in [Him], though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in [Jesus] shall never die.”
This was Lucille’s sure and certain hope.
So we are left with Jesus’ question to Martha, “Do you believe this?”
Lucille, who has been freed from this veil of tears and now lives beautifully and gracefully in heaven, admonishes us to answer as did Martha, “Yes, Lord; I believe that [Jesus] is the Christ, the Son of God.”
In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Heavenly Father, even in the midst of pain, suffering and death, I believe that you love us and that those who fall asleep in Jesus will rise again. Thank you for your love and assurance; in Jesus’ name. Amen.
© 2017 True Men Ministries