My best friend since 1967 passed away last week from liver cancer. His wife asked me to say a few words at his funeral. I did but it was hard. How do you fit 50 years into 5 minutes? Big Mike was a teddy bear. Always ready with a pun that would make you roll your eyes. He and his wife Tina are true friends. My wife Patti and I had many an Ann Arbor dinner where we shared the ups and downs of life, family issues, frustrations, laughter, etc. They were always so understanding and supportive. They’re both believers so I know where Mike is right now. He’s in the presence of God Almighty.
But it hurts, it hurts real bad. We’ve been thru so much together. Two years of school, a college theatrical group, becoming Christians, becoming parents and then grandparents, going on a vacation together, monthly dinners for 15 years, and sooo much more.
Even though I know “we grieve but not as those who have no hope of eternal life” (1st Thessalonians 4:13), we still grieve. I wonder if this is how my parents felt when they started losing their friends. I know that there’s nothing we’re facing that preceding generations haven’t faced. I know that my grief (and my wife’s) will come in waves that will gradually get farther and farther apart. But I miss my friend NOW! I realize that I must accept the good in life with the bad (Job 2:10). This is an interruption in our fellowship, but it will resume in heaven for an eternity. And the heavenly restaurants we’ll go to will be incredible.
But as of right now, it still hurts. When you love someone deeply, you grieve deeply. And God is right there with you in the pain. He’s been there. He not only lost His Son, but many of His children have rejected Him permanently. So He knows what I’m going thru and will comfort, strengthen and walk me thru it.
Death sucks! I’ll be so glad when there is no death anymore (Revelation 21:4 1st Corinthians 15:25, 26)), when we will no longer feel its sting (1st Corinthians 15:55), when it’s cast into the Lake of Fire (Revelation 20:14) never to touch our lives again. I long for that day. Until then, I will miss you, Mike. See you later!
I love you,