OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Here is one of my favorite pictures of my grandma

Ecclesiastes 7:2 “It is better to go to the house of mourning than to go to the house of feasting, for this is the end of all mankind, and the living will lay it to heart.”

A week and a half ago, at my Grandma’s memorial service, this verse struck me in a way it never had before.

When Mr. Glock closed the service and referred to this verse in his prayer, I thought that’s so true. It’s so much better to go to a funeral than to a party. In the past hour, as I had been sitting there on the front row, I had been reminded deeply of the realities of life through all that had just been shared.

Parties are often filled with emptiness, but funerals are rich with lessons and reminders. First, they remind us of the reality that each one of us will also die (unless Jesus comes back first). It is at funerals when we ask ourselves questions such as What difference will my life make in the battle for Christ? How many lives will I touch? How deeply? How much will I have prayed?

We only have one time around – one chance. We need a lot of reminders about how short life is. So it is better to go to the house of mourning than to the house of feasting!

And, of course, Christian funerals are the best, because though they are tear-filled, they are basically a big worship service. We rejoice in the hope that we have in Jesus – the One who has conquered death and replaced it’s sting with hope!

Even though many of you didn’t know my Grandma, I still think you would be edified by listening to her memorial service.

Here is an outline of what is shared:

Stephen’s introduction
2:30 George Farber (message)
18:00 Stephen introducing sharing time
19:20 Matt Coventon (friend from church)
21:00 Andy Parker (friend from church)
26:00 My mom
30:00 My aunt Roxanne
32:30 Carla Neto (friend from international student outreach)
34:20 Sarah and myself
41:00 My uncle Larry
46:00 Dave Keele (friend from church)
50:00 My Grandpa
57:00 Mr. Glock Closing Prayer

7 comments

  1. Funerals are made to be like parties these days where we remember the good times we have had with people, or we remember all they did in their lives. This is a change from the “old days” – the party atmosphere certainly was not present at funerals even as little as 50 years ago.
    I think this is all because people don’t really want to think about death and what it means to us all, they want to pretend they will live forever, and that death only comes to the really old – which is not true of course!
    Isn’t it wonderful though, that we have a “sure and certain hope” and know our future is secure in His hands!

  2. Thank you so much for this post, Grace! It is so encouraging to see young people like you and me actually expressing your love for your elders! This post really made me think as well! Thank you!

    BTW, what do you think of close friendships that end suddenly, much like human deaths?

  3. Hi Charis, Yes, I know close friendships ending or separating can be very painful. I think some of the biggest things that help are to 1) trust God is good and in is control, even when you don’t understand 2) obey Him 3) allow the trial to deepen your walk with Christ as you depend on Him for strength to endure 4) treasure your friendship with the Lord Jesus in ways you never have before 5) Spend a lot of time in Psalms.
    Just some thoughts on the issue! 🙂
    Hope to see you again sometime — I was just telling my family last night how I miss Singapore/Malaysia!

  4. Thank you so much for sharing this! As I am a 48-year old grandmother, I find myself thinking more & more of what my legacy will be. I pray that I will show the same kind of love & compassion for others and also faithful obedience to the Lord that your grandmother did so that my grandchildren will know the joy & peace of being God’s child. Even though your grandma has left this earth, she is continuing to lead others to Jesus!

  5. Grace, your grandmother is an inspiration. The way she saw beauty in the things people overlooked or thought were ugly is a true blessing and picture of how a woman can beautify her life, not outwardly, but inwardly, with a happy heart that seeks to bring happiness to the world around her with the sweetness of Christ. Her memory lives on to still encourage others, including myself. Thank you for sharing. Love in Christ, Christina

  6. Thank you so much for sharing, Grace! We’ve met Larry & Roxanne at SBL, but I didn’t realize they were your uncle and aunt! =) Praying for your family and grateful for your grandma’s example.

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