March 21, 2011

 I’ll See You at the Party

Melissa Taylor

 “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life and have it to the full.”John 10:10 (NIV)        

Devotion:
She asked to see the family, so of course, we complied with her request. After all, this woman, now in her ninety-second year of life, had earned our love and respect.

Just nine months ago, she was independent, full of energy, and involved in life. Now she was calling her family together to say, “Good-bye.” We were saddened by Little Granny’s announcement that she was ready to meet Jesus face to face, until she added, “Put away those sad faces…I am happy! Keep smiling.”

Many would not understand her joy in the midst of the knowledge she was dying. But Little Granny knew something about where she was going.

I took my kids to see her to say their final good-byes. They hugged their great-grandmother and told her how much they loved her. She told them the same, her words faint and weak.

When it was my turn, I leaned in and kissed her cheek. “I love you,” I said. To which she replied, “I’ll see you at the party.”

At first I thought she might be disoriented. But as I looked at her through my tears, I realized she was thinking very clearly. Little Granny was on her way to “the party” in heaven, her eternal home.

I get the joy that Little Granny felt over going to the party. I’m so thankful that after this life journey is over, I’ll join her at that party. But even in the joy of eternity, death is hard. It’s hard on us who are still here.

My mother died one year ago. The ache that burns deep in my heart is like none I’ve experienced. She was my best friend, and now she’s gone. Just today as I was grocery shopping, I caught a glimpse of the apple turnovers that she loved so much. We used to eat them topped with vanilla ice cream. I broke down right there in the frozen food section. I so badly want to enjoy an apple turnover with my mom. That part of my life is over and I’m left wounded. The only peace I have is that Mom is at the “party” and one day I’ll join her. Until then, I must live my life.

I don’t mean get through life; I mean really live life. As Jesus says, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy;I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full”(John 10:10). My Life Application Study Bible’s commentary puts it this way: “In contrast to the thief who takes life, Jesus gives life. The life he gives right now is abundantly richer and fuller. It is eternal, yet it begins immediately.”

Sadly, too many of us spend our lives waiting to go to the party instead of living for the party - right now. We realize that our life here on earth is not always what we wished for but then we settle for a dull, just-getting-by life instead of the spiritually rich and abundantly full life Jesus offers.

How do we live that full life with so many trials? We stay close to the One who has promised us life; we stay close to Jesus. We remain in the Word of God and apply His promises to our lives. It doesn’t mean all of our pain will be removed, but it does mean we can live full and free lives.

Little Granny said, “I’ll see you at the party.”  Well Little Granny, I hope you are having a blast up there! And in memory of you and my mother, I think I’ll have a little party right here of my own… a Jesus party, where I will strive to do just what He said and live my life to the full!

I hope to see you at the party!

Dear Lord, thank You for giving life to me through Jesus. Because of You, I have hope and reason to be joyful. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
Join Melissa as she leads a community of online friends closer to Jesus so we can live out His Word in our everyday lives. All are invited! You can visit Melissa’s blog to find out more and sign up for her online Bible study of It’s No Secret. Today she’s giving away an autographed copy.

It’s No Secret: Revealing Divine Truths Every Woman Should Know by Rachel Olsen.  All books purchased through Proverbs 31 Ministries will be autographed by Rachel!

Want to talk with Rachel, Melissa and others about the book? Sign up for the It’s No Secret, Online Bible Study Conference Calls.

Share the joy of life with Jesus with your children through From the Pound to the Palace book and DVD by Van Walton

When you purchase resources through Proverbs 31 Ministries, you touch eternity! Your purchase supports the many areas of hope-giving ministry we provide at no cost. Therefore, we are so grateful for every purchase you make with us. Thank you!

Application Steps: 
I want to invite you to a great big party on my blog, www.MelissaTaylor.org, where we are going to learn to live to the full!  We may share a few tears, but we’ll also celebrate this life with joy and laughter while reading It’s No Secret together. It will take us from feeling tired, exhausted, bored, and sad to being filled with Jesus and the Word of God!  What do you say - will you join me?

Reflections: 
Am I exhausted, bored, or just sad about life? Isn’t it time to change all that?

Power Verses:
John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (NIV)

John 14:6, “Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.’” (NIV)

© 2011 by Melissa Taylor. All rights reserved.

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