Titus 2 Lessons from a Friend’s Funeral
Last week, one of my friends lost her battle with cancer and went home to be with the Lord. Monday afternoon, while I was sitting at her funeral, the Lord gripped my heart hard.
My friend Cathy was a true Titus 2 woman.
You couldn’t know Cathy without knowing she was a Christian. She loves Jesus and it shined all over her. It was clearly the most important thing in her life. That love made her love for her husband and four boys even stronger.
Cathy was one of the founders of our local homeschool support group. We served there together for many years. Over those twenty years of leadership, she counseled young mothers not just about homeschooling, but about marriage, pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding, and parenting. She was the wise older woman for hundreds of young families in our county. She could hardly go to the store without meeting someone whose life she had spoken into.
It was heart-wrenching to look up front to see her husband and boys lined up on the front row, to see the grandbaby she would never see grow up, her son and his fiance that would miss her at their wedding.
What wrenched me even more, though, was to look around the congregation. There were only about a dozen of us from our homeschool group there. A dozen, not hundreds.
I really expected to see people filling the church, crowded around outside. I could probably list at least a hundred by name whose lives had been changed by her counsel. I know. People are busy, they’re sick, they struggle to find a babysitter. Still, I thought many more would be there.
It made me think. Outward-turned ministry is so important. We’ve got to share the gospel, disciple other women, be there for our friends. I get that. We love what the Lord allows us to do in speaking and writing. There are few feelings more wonderful than seeing God use your pitiful words to work in someone’s life.
The time is going to come, though, when our work here is over, when we go home to Jesus. When that last day here comes, there are some who would never miss our funeral. People whose grief will be deep and palpable. People who will sit in the front pew at our funeral. Our families.
When the time comes to say goodbye to my life, I want two things: I want to hear my Lord say, “Well done, my good and faithful servant,” and I want my husband and children to know my love for them came before all the rest of the world.
My friends in ministry, my fellow speakers, authors, bloggers, leaders: I want to close my computer when my child needs me. I want to save energy to spend time with my husband at the end of the day. I want my family to remember that I was there for them, not that I usually didn’t have time. It’s hard. We have to work long hours to get everything done. All that won’t matter, though, if we don’t meet the needs of the ones that we matter the most to. Let’s live in such a way that we do right by the people in the front row.
Cathy did a great job putting her Lord and family first. Father, please help me to love You and love my family like I ought to, day to day, hour by hour.
By His grace,
In gratefulness for the life of Cathy Aycock Jones, 1958-2016.
Wise and Faithful Christian, Wife, Mother, Mentor.