The obituaries catch my eye on a pretty regular basis. It isn't that I'm morbid or anything. Intrigued would be the word. I'm especially intrigued by the one obit that leads the page. There's always one that is at the top and it gets more space than all the others. And I wonder- did that persons family pay more money? Did the editors of the paper find that paticular persons life to be especially inspiring? Because usually I don't. I hate to say it, but I am usually saddened by the headline for that extra large obit. You're thinking, of course you're sad, it's about a dead person. No, it isn't just that. It's what the title of their life is. It usually says something about the person's wonderful sense of humor or ability to cook great meals or incredible athletic ability. Those are all fine things, but is that what their life was? Do I want to be remembered for making people laugh, making an elaborate feast or being able to run a marathon? No. I can't help but wonder what the title of my obit would be. I mean, it's your life in a nutshell. And it isn't that I want any praise for my life. But I want the people who are sitting at their kitchen table drinking their coffee in the morning to be able to say Amen! As I did this morning when I finally read an obituary that was titled "Ayers was a unique woman of faith." It was such a relief to read of a woman remembered for her trust in God and the way her faith inspired others to grow in faith. Respect, kindness, and grace are words that were used to describe this 94 year old woman. I too want to be remembered as a woman of the Lord. A woman with a gracious and kind heart. A woman who was led by the Spirit and had a passion for God and His Word. I want to be remembered for gentleness. I know that most of the time I do not live up to those qualities! I hope and pray that the Lord will use me- my life AND my death- to honor Him. That while I'm here He will continue to sanctify me and make me a gentle woman.
"Let your gentleness be known to all men.
The Lord is at hand." Phillippians 4:5
The notes in my Bible for the word gentleness say, "The Greek word denotes the generous spirit that rises above offenses, or a forbearing spirit, of which Jesus provides the supreme example. Such a person does not insist on his rights. Only such persons learn the secret of joy."