By Jerry Bacon
Throughout the bible there are great stories of great men. Men that accomplished many things and left great legacies that will be talked about for generations. Uncle Art was a great man in our time. Our family has been so blessed by some of the greatest men and women. I truly believe that God has blessed us in so many ways.
The other day I was praying, and asking God questions about Uncle Art.
Many people think that it is wrong to ask God questions. But the truth is that God longs for us to talk to Him. Too often we think God is so far away and we have to be in a church, or live up to certain standards for Him to hear us. But God knows everything about each and every one of us. There is no way to surprise God or even disappoint Him. He know’s exactly what we are going to do before we know. So please understand it’s fine to ask God questions. The bible says that God has actually adopted us as His sons and daughters. As a dad I love it when my daughter asks me questions, or tells me her concerns, and especially when she tells me she loves me. The problem arises when we reject God and allow bitterness and unforgiveness towards Him and others around us to take control of our life.
So I was asking God why did Uncle Art have to go through so much? Why did his body have to go through so much? All of a sudden I felt the Lord say to me, that Uncle Art was a very hard worker. He was a great provider to his family. He took great pride in going to work, taking his family on vacations, building his own house, and having fun in life. UncleArt was the type of man that would bend over backwards to help another person, but never wanted people to have to bend over backwards for him. He would have never been able to sit still and allow his family to serve him the way they did.
And this may sound weird to some, but God actually gave Uncle Art a gift that not many people get. Uncle Art was sharp as a tack. His mind was with him to the very end. I know this because I seen him the day they brought him home from the hospital. As I was sharing a story with everyone, Uncle Art started to laugh. When I told him that God loves him and cares about him, he got serious and looked up. When I left he waved goodbye. So I know that Uncle Art was still just as sharp as ever. But God showed me that Uncle Art got to see the fruits of his heart. Uncle Art’s fruit was his family. His whole life revolved around them and for them. In the past couple of years Uncle Art got to see his wife stand by his side and love on him with everything inside her. He got to see her strength in the most difficult time of their lives. Uncle Art got to witness his son’s taking care of their mom and dad. He got to see them working in his yard and being there when they needed their children the most. Uncle Art got to see the love of his grandchildren. He witnessed Bryon mowing the grass and raking leaves. A lot of men pass and never get to see the accomplishment of raising their families. But God allowed this gift to Uncle Art. I believe with all my heart that God will look at Uncle Art and say well done good and faithful servant.
The truth is, we will all be here one day. Just because we live as if we will live forever, we won’t. At least not on the earth as we know it. We have two choices in the lives we currently live in, we can be bitter and unforgiving, fighting and arguing with everyone and everything or we can take the gift that God has given us which is our family and community and make it the best we can. People want to live forever, who wouldn’t? There is a way to live forever in this earth and I believe Uncle Art found it. We live through our legacy. Uncle Art has left an amazing legacy that has already been passed down to his children and his grandchildren. What an honor for him. When I think of the unconditional love Uncle Art had for Aunt Dar and his children it makes me think of the unconditional love God has for each one of us. When I think of Uncle Art’s labor his whole life, I think of God’s labor of love for each one of us. When I think of how good uncle Art was to me and the way he loved me and included me in his family fun on so many occasions, it makes me think of the way God has adopted all of us and invited us in to be part of His family. Uncle Art had a lot of God’s characteristics. And this is why I loved him so much, this is why we all loved Uncle Art so much.
Romans 8:23 speaks of the groanings of the people of this world. It talks about the fact that we will receive new bodies that won’t have to endure sin and suffering ever again. Uncle Art fought the good fight and he WON !!! He finished the race. Please don’t let the memories of his sickness drown out the memories of his life.
My prayer is this today, as we sit here and face the reality of how temporary life is, let us face the reality of eternal life. God sent His Son Jesus to die and pay the price for our sins. God knew what kind of people we are. He knows how imperfect we are and He allowed His perfect Son to die in our place so that we can be with Him one day. The only thing God asks is for us to ask for forgiveness of what we have done wrong and believe in His Son Jesus Christ. Please don’t let the sun go down on you today without accepting this amazing gift of eternal salvation. You don’t need a preacher to get you there, you don’t even need a church. God is always with you and ready to listen to whatever you have to say.
May God bless each and everyone of you here today. Aunt Dar, Ron, Scott, Latisha, Susan, Bryon, and Nathon thank you so much for showing Uncle Art that his hard work paid off in so many ways. Hold your heads up high and allow his legacy to grow in all of you. We love you so much.