(** This was something that I wrote a few days ago and put on my Facebook page but wanted to include it in this email.
Mom, Kari, Abraham and I will be driving to PA tomorrow for the viewing and funeral for Aunt Hazel. She stepped into the arms of Jesus yesterday. The viewing is tomorrow afternoon and funeral Tuesday morning. We would covet your prayers as we travel and are face to face with the many memories we have of her.
Ps. Aunt Hazel told the nurses on Friday that she was going to heaven tomorrow. Guess she was ready!)
Me with Great Aunt Helen (in chair) and Great Aunt Hazel
My Great Aunt Hazel is one of the kindest, most generous women I know. She would give you the shirt off her back - she is always thanking others when they do anything for her. She has a quick sense of humor and can enjoy a good laugh. She has a collection of watches. I don't know if she did it on purpose but she probably has 30! Aunt Hazel has great taste in jewelry. She has been very shrewd with her money and investments. She is a no nonsense kind of woman.
I remember spending time with her and my other Great Aunt Helen during the summers growing up. Kari always stayed with Aunt Helen, playing cards until the wee hours of the morning. Aunt Hazel and I would stay up watching TV then go to bed, only to be up early in the morning. We would go to one of their homes (right across the street from each other) for breakfast. It was the best.
Aunt Hazel taught me to crochet and to do some needlepoint, neither of which I still remember! What I do remember is the crocheted skirt and matching vest she made me when I was about 5 - dark green with a red ladybug on the front of the vest. I was quite the fashion statement!
And I love her with all my heart.
Which is why my heart is breaking to know that she is not well, in fact Jesus will be calling her name very soon. It makes me sad to know that she is alert enough to know and understand all that is happening in her body, how it is shutting down slowly.
Yet in the middle of all my sadness, there is great rejoicing -- yes rejoicing!For all my life, my family has talked about Jesus and lived Jesus to my mom's family - my great aunts, grandparents, uncle. And all my life both of my great aunts have had views on God that just didn't mesh with Scripture. Either they were good enough to get into heaven or everyone went to heaven.
About a month ago, Aunt Hazel was watching a pastor on TV talking about faith. She brought this up to my mom in talking and said that what the pastor was talking about really struck her and she believed. In other conversations that my Mom has had with Aunt Hazel this week she believes in her heart that my 97 year old Great Aunt accepted Jesus that day when listening to the pastor. I mean WOW! What a total God thing. Who'd have thought that for 35+ years we have been talking about Jesus and here, a month before God takes her home, she opens herself to Him!
So tonight I am sad knowing that my sweet Great Aunt is losing her battle -- yet I am rejoicing that her life will begin anew in Heaven with her Heavenly Father.God is good ALL the time and He is faithful to carry out HIS plan in our lives -- even if it seems like He waits until the last minute. His timing is perfect. Thanks Father for the peace of knowing where Aunt Hazel's eternity will lie.
Uncle Scott and Aunt Hazel at our wedding - 2001