On December 1, 2021, I knew the end was near and that Aunt Trisha would soon be departing from this world. But she didn’t know, she never really accepted the fact that she was dying until that day and I believe that was God’s gift of grace to her. All she could think and talk about was going to her new home, her condo in Hendersonville.
Often throughout my visits with her, she would say to me, “I keep asking God, ‘God, why did you make everything so easy for me to find a place in Hendersonville and sell my house here if I was going to get cancer? I just don’t understand.”
Mostly I would just respond, “I don’t know either.” But one day about midway through her four-month battle with pancreatic cancer, I had been pondering on John 14:1-3 and as our conversation landed back to her lack of understanding what God was doing,
I said to her, “All I can figure is that God did all of this to give you hope about the new place He’s preparing for you in Heaven. I believe He orchestrated all of this so that you would have something to look forward to. I think He allowed you to come and enjoy your new little place for three days because He is showing you that the place He’s preparing is far greater.”
Perplexed and still uncertain she said, “But why? Why now?”
“I don’t know the answer to that but here’s what I know He promises in His Word, ‘Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.’” John 14:1-3 ESV
As I quoted the scripture to her, a peace washed over her and she said, “Maybe you’re right but I just don’t think I’m ready to die”. And she wasn’t at least not on that day or for another couple of months but on December 1, she finally accepted that cancer had invaded her body and her time was short. No one but God knew just how short it would be but I can assure you that on December 4, 2021, when He called her home she no longer thought about the sweet little place she wanted to call home because her new dwelling was far greater than her mind could conceive and her questions were put to rest.
As I think back over the four months, I realize that God gave her hope. When He helped us find and purchase her place in Hendersonville, He gave her hope of a new place, a sweet special place, just perfect for her. When He allowed her to come to her special place and stay for three nights, the hope of coming back was always at the forefront of her mind. And when she decided to allow Hospice to manage her care, He gave her hope of coming home. And what He was accomplishing the entire time was preparation for her homecoming with Him in Heaven.
Maybe today, you have a lot of questions running through your mind about what God is doing and why, maybe you don’t have a clear understanding of what He’s up to. Can I encourage you today? He is always up to something good and it is always far better than we can hope or imagine.