Tag Archives: dying

Precious Gifts

We hear the word “precious” bantered around like it is something ordinary. We might hear: “Oh doesn’t so-and-so look precious?” The word seems pedestrian. We hear it everywhere.

I like this definition of precious: (from dictionary.reference.com)

(something) highly esteemed for some spiritual, non material, or moral quality:

It is uncommon. It is exceedingly rare.

This past week, I realised I had two very distinct precious gifts.

A person who is part of my extended family was ill. He came home from the hospital, to die. We didn’t know when, but was certain that we had a few days. He came home on a Friday. Despite all, we had a great evening, enjoying each others company. The next day, Saturday, we also enjoyed a wonderful (awe filled) day. He wanted sausage. I went home to prepare the peppers and onions that would accompany the meal. He didn’t eat a lot, but as I jokingly said, he always ate with gusto. He savoured every morsel. It was time to rest. He was having difficultly moving, so his wife called me to help him back to bed. A few hours later, he had passed. No lingering illness. No suffering. He was gone.

The Bible says:

“Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his faithful servants.” (Psalm 116:15 NIV)

While I was saddened at the loss of a dear friend, I realised that God had given me a great honour. I was privileged to help prepare the last meal he would eat on this earth. While I wasn’t there physically when he passed, I knew that he was safely in the arms of our beloved Saviour.

Exactly a week later, I was visiting a friend who is severely autistic. I have high functioning Autism. I share a kindred bond with other Autistics, that Neuro-Typicals (our name for people who are NOT on the Autism Spectrum) would not understand. One of the other residents there, a non-verbal Autistic, had been seated in the living room. He enjoys playing with toys, and I asked the staff if it would be okay if I gave Michael a toy. They said it would be fine. As I carefully placed the toy in his lap, he took my hand in his. He looked at me, then carefully took my hand, and kissed it. People with Autism are usually poor at non-verbal communication. This simple act communicated volumes. God had again bestowed, a precious gift.

“The closer we are to the Lord, the more likely He is to commit precious things and precious people to our care. Let’s love him deeply, that we might be privileged to serve our Lord as John served Christ.”

Richards, L., (1990). The 365 Day Daily Devotional, pg 810, Wheaton , Illinois: Victor Publications

Dealing with Death

Startling as it seems, I spent over an hour on the phone with my best friend, helping me to understand life.

Brad helped me understand that I am powerless to change the situation in which I find myself in, regarding my Dad.

There is no going back to the halcyon days of yesteryear. It is, after all, what it is. Dying is a process I am just beginning to understand, as I myself, enter my 6th decade on this seemingly rotating ball of boredom at times.

I am learning that time is perhaps the most precious commodity we humans have. Memories are fashioned in the context of time, whether they be good or bad.

I have not been here. It is painful. It is powerful. The lessons being taught, are not what I desire. Control. It is an illusion, to an extent. I want control of the situation, but it it not mine to orchestrate.

Perhaps as we look back at our own life, and understand the necessity of brokenness and barren spirit, we begin to understand the essence of life itself. We sequester that which is painful. Which is tedious. Which is dull, and mundane.

It is in these things, we find the true meaning of life. Simply to love, and to be loved.

Thanks old friend, for reminding me of the value of friendship. “To rejoice with them that rejoice, and to weep with them that weep.” (Romans 12:15)

“A joy shared, is a double joy. But a burden shared, is half a burden.”
— Jewish Proverb

Original text,