My Mommy's in Heaven

My Mommy's in Heaven Tract

This is a web version of one of our printed gospel fliers. The printed version is available in our store.

angelThis year Christmas will be different for our family. In 2004, my father died of an aggressive cancer, four days after Christmas. So that was the last Christmas we celebrated with Dad, who was in a hospital bed. The next two years were lonely for Mom as she battled her own cancer, a much longer battle that started in 1996. She joined us for Christmas 2005, after we moved here to Frederick County. She said it was “her best Christmas ever” being surrounded by her family. By Christmas 2006, however, she was beginning to decline. The chemotherapy was no longer working without doing too much damage to her organs, and there were no other options. We had always welcomed her to our home, and in about January, after a hospitalization, she finally committed to come live with us. But yet, she had worries, and was expecting to live longer than she did, and so that move did not take place until she was nearing the end, and was very, very weak. On April 5th, we received a call from her “Home Helper” agency, saying Mom could no longer be alone at night, and “What would they like us to do?” We dropped everything, and went to her home in Pennsylvania to pack her up and bring her here to our home.

With Nana At Heaven's Door

candleWe were so blessed with so many special memories of what turned out to be her last two weeks on earth. On my husband’s birthday, April 20th, she died in our home in the room she had dubbed “Nana’s room” two Christmases ago. My children and I were all present when she breathed her last. Those last two weeks of her life in our home were exhausting for us, probably the hardest thing I have ever done in my life, but so very precious. My daughter was my hard-working assistant, helping in so many ways, and getting a crash course in nursing care. We loved Nana home to be with Jesus. Each day we had her, we suffered the loss of something. But I believe as we saw her deteriorate here, she was growing stronger day by day in her eternal spirit. Each loss here, represented a gain there. A dear friend sent me this verse, and I saw it in new light, applied to my dear Mommy.

2 Corinthians 4:16-18
“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” She ate and drank less and less, then couldn't really talk anymore, then could barely move, or even open her eyes. After that there were still pats and squeezed hands. But we trusted the Lord that each loss here was a gain for her in the Kingdom of God.

We had no idea her time here would be so short, although we knew she was in her last days. She kept her sense of humor as long as she could communicate with us. We told her to ring her bell or call for us, and to not try going to the bathroom by herself as she was so weak. But one night shortly after we moved her here, when I went in to check on her, she was already in her bathroom, and looked up at me and said, “Caught me!” with her sweet trademark smile. That gives you a peek at her determined spirit.

nanaThis photograph was taken only 12 days before she died. She looks so good. But what you can't see is that it took a walker, a stair lift, a wheelchair, and two adults to transfer her to get her to that chair. She was extremely weak in the flesh, but extremely strong and determined in her spirit. The day we took this picture was Easter Sunday. When I had gone in to see her early that morning, she motioned to me to look out the window, to see the Easter sunrise. After that she told me she had some difficulty sleeping, because every time she closed her eyes she saw a pleasant scene, then when she opened her eyes what she saw was completely different. I told her to tell me what she was seeing. Then she told me she had seen Jesus. Twice. And the second time was just then, as I was sitting with her. I was in tears, and asked her to tell me what he looked like. She said, “Kind of grey and hazy now, but He’s looking at us with His arms reaching out.” Through my tears, I said, “You get to see Him, I have to wait!” She said, “But you will come later.” When I told the hospice nurse about it, he said that usually when people see things like that, they are about 10 days to 2 weeks away from death. She lived 12 days more.

When she was still able to talk, she would see things that we couldn't see, and describe them to us. One of the things she told Sarah was that she saw water above. I was reminded of the classic “Pilgrim's Progress” where John Bunyan likens death to the crossing of a river, and the depth of the water would vary with the individual who was passing over. It was not the same for all. Although Mom had strong faith, I didn’t want her to be afraid at all. I felt impressed to tell her that Jesus would carry her over the water. She died so peacefully, I believe He did. When she was nearing the very end, and not talking anymore, I told her that since she couldn't speak anymore, that she should pray and tell Jesus to help us know what she wants or needs. She replied to that with a “mmmm” of acknowledgement.

In her last moments, she opened her eyes wide as she took her last breaths. I held her, and told her, sobbing of course, that I loved her, and that it was OK. She then said something back to me. It was several words I think, but not really discernable. I will forever believe she said “I love you, Linda” back to me before her final exhale. I know I will see her again. But in the meantime, I cry lots. I miss her so much. Everything seems to remind me of her. But I know grief is for a season, and I am so grateful for the precious privilege of having her here with us, to travail as in labor pains for her birth into her new body, pain free and sin free in heaven, with her precious Savior and Lord.

Many People Have Lost Someone Whom They Loved

This Christmas, 2007, the first Christmas after Mom is gone, we have the comfort of knowing Mom is in heaven. And we, as believers in the birth, death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ, also have the hope of heaven. We will see her again, in perfect, healthy, sin free bodies. We would like you to have that hope, also. We hope that you would be willing, this Christmas, to ponder not only the birth, but also the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus as well, and how it applies to your life. Do you know where you will spend eternity? If you were to die tonight and stand before God, and He would say, “Why should I let you into heaven?” What would you say? If your hope is in living life the best you could, it is not enough!

1. We have sinned.

For the bible says, “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) The truth is that one lie is enough to separate you from the almighty, perfect, creator God. Have you ever told a lie? Even just a little lie? If you have, the scriptures teach that you are destined for hell. But the truth, revealed in the scriptures, does not stop there.

2. God loves us perfectly.

God, who made us, also loves us with an everlasting love, no matter what you have done in the past. He tells us “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

3. God paid the death penalty for our sin, through Jesus Christ.

God loves us so much that, in spite of what we may have done, He died for us. He sent His perfect son, God incarnate, to pay the death penalty for our sin. “For while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8) But Christ didn't stay dead. He broke the bonds of death by rising again, conquering sin and death. This fact, not the fiction the Da Vinci Code would have you believe, the fact of the resurrection has proof in the form of eyewitnesses accounts and many original manuscripts. When Christ rose and conquered death, He, being perfect, paid the penalty for all our sin, so we can have the opportunity to spend eternity with God.

4. We must receive Christ as Savior and Lord to know and experience the forgiveness and new life Christ offers.

“For as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to be called children of God.” John 1:12

The story of Nicodemus is interesting to read, and gives the context for the most quoted verse from the Bible, John 3:16.

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him, should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

The New Birth, the story of Nicodemus, John 3:1-16

“Now there was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews; this man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You have come from God as a teacher; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.” Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born, can he?” Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not be amazed that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it is going; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit.” Nicodemus said to Him, “How can these things be?” Jesus answered and said to him, “Are you the teacher of Israel and do not understand these things? Truly, truly, I say to you, we speak of what we know and testify of what we have seen, and you do not accept our testimony. If I told you earthly things and you do not believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things? No one has ascended into heaven, but He who descended from heaven: the Son of Man. As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; so that whoever believes will in Him have eternal life. For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” Jesus says, it is not enough to born physically into this world, we must also have a spiritual birth that occurs when we receive Christ.

Receiving Christ involves turning from sin to God, inviting him in, and giving him the “drivers seat” of your life. When I received Christ, I prayed a prayer to God something like this: “Dear Jesus, I need you, Thank you for dying to pay the price for my sins. Though I am undeserving of Eternal Life, your love for me has made a way for me to live forever in heaven with you by carrying the weight of all my sin on your body as you died on the cross, and shed your blood for me. Forgive me of my many sins before you that have caused me to fall short of the glory of God, and could cause me to be eternally separated from you. I ask you to come into my life, and I receive you now as my Savior and Lord. I give you control of my life. I ask the Holy Spirit to indwell me and strengthen me in my new spiritual birth to live in victory over sin. I ask you to help me walk in the power of the Holy Spirit, and not in my fleshly sinful habits.

Make me the kind of person you want me to be. In Jesus name, Amen.”

If you pray this prayer for yourself, we would love to know. If you have questions, we would love to know also!

We are working on a web site that may answer some questions, Please feel free to visit it and drop us an email!

God's great blessings to you,
In Christ, Linda