With our masks on and with careful social distancing, Ray and I attended my Uncle Jerry’s funeral on Saturday afternoon.
The minister talked about the years Uncle Jerry taught a men’s Sunday School class. My cousin Tina did a beautiful job of telling stories from her childhood. I remembered many and learned some new ones. I especially appreciated the details she told about his work as an air traffic controller during the Korean War. His job was to talk pilots down onto a grassy field with no runway and no lights at night so that they landed safely.
One of the many fun things my uncle did during his life was working as a radio announcer while still a young man. Tina told about his using his big radio voice to read Bible stories to her and her brother when they were children. She told about how important those readings were to her and how it set a Biblical framework for her.
As Ray and I drove home, we passed a country church with a marquee out front. This sign went something like this: “Tired of hearing bad news? Come inside and hear the good news of Jesus.”
It seemed a fitting postscript to what we had just heard at the funeral. It also reminded me of one of the verses from Philippians 4, which I wrote about for a few days recently.
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true,
whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure,
whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable,
if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise,
think about these things.
As hard as funerals can be, a funeral for a follower of Jesus can be an excellent time to think about those things. Ray and I sat safely in the back of the church, so the funeral director was often in view. I wondered if she pays attention to the words spoken at all the funerals she attends. I hope so. This one highlighted the true, honorable, right, pure, lovely, commendable, excellent, and praiseworthy things about Uncle Jerry’s life. And it pointed every listener to Jesus.
Learning what is true, honorable, right, pure, lovely, commendable, excellent, and praiseworthy and pointing children to Jesus is an excellent plan for a homeschool day.
For I am not ashamed of the gospel,
for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes,
to the Jew first and also to the Greek.
For in it the righteousness of God is revealed
from faith to faith; as it is written:
“But the righteous one will live by faith.”