Mom was an extreme extrovert. She talked more than the average person and everyone listened. She was the only woman I know who could laugh at herself and her own jokes and get everyone around her smiling and laughing.
After Dad passed, Mom and I had some sweet times of fellowship when I was in the States for a visit. The last time I saw Mom, she started telling me how much she loved me and how proud she was for everything I’d done. Then she said, “When I die, do not worry about anything. I’ve taken care of it all.”
“All the arrangements are complete. I really like Rev. Belton and left instructions he should preach my funeral, and gave him the scriptures and songs I want sung. His offering is in an envelope on my dresser. My outfit is hanging in the closet, cleaned, and pressed. It’s marked for my funeral and ready to go. I’ve written out my obituary, and I’ve handwritten thank you notes to all my pallbearers that I’ve requested.”
My mouth fell open as she continued. “I didn’t want to burden you or the others with having to make funeral arrangements, especially when it’s easier for me to write out my wishes. And I had fun doing it. So don’t concern yourself. I’m officially excusing you from coming to my funeral. You probably won’t hear about it in Africa, since letters take a month. So you have my permission and blessing not to come. It really will not matter.”
Then she ended. “I won’t be at my funeral either. I’LL BE IN HEAVEN WITH DAD!”
When I finally caught my breath, I realized Mom had become a fanatic like me. But while growing up she and Dad tried to stop me from becoming a religious fanatic.
We hugged and kissed, said we loved each other, and I got on the plane for Africa. A month later, I had a dream that Mom died. Dad was standing in Heaven waiting for Mom, and he said, “I’ve been waiting a long time for you. What took you so long getting here?”
Mom said, “I needed extra time with the grandchildren.”
A few days later, I received a letter from my sister. She lived next door to Mom and checked on her every day. She found Mom in her nightgown early one morning shortly after I left. It appeared she died in her sleep in the night. Glory to God. Mom had her heart’s desire, to die peacefully in her home.
Mom’s last words were an inspiration to me. So I wrote out what I wanted for my memorial service, the scriptures, and songs and had lots of fun.
“These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God. 1 John 5:13
“He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.