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A Peace Worth More than Anything

      By Fern Horst

"The peace of God, which passes all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus." (Luke 10:38-42)

This Spring I experienced a significant loss - one I had dreaded all my life: the death of my sweet mother. There are no words to express the extent of her impact on my life, nor the depth of that loss. From before I was born her love nurtured me, and always will.

Mother loved the Lord Jesus more than anything, and out of that relationship flowed her life-giving love for others. She nurtured countless lives with her warm sweet smile, her respect for others, her caring heart, and her ongoing encouragement to have a deep relationship with Jesus. I want to be like her.

In the last weeks and months of her earthly life, while her body showed signs of weakening, Mother's daily routine of Bible reading remained a constant. I will always treasure the memory of her sitting contentedly in her pink chair by the window, reading her Bible. She had a deep trust in the Lord and an acceptance of whatever He had for her next: continued life here with us or life there with Him. Her testimony to a friend during her last days here was that she was ready to go be with the Lord, but felt for her family. That was my mother: always thinking of others first, but knowing ultimately God's plan was best for all of us.

As the end of her earthly life neared, my aunt asked her if she was seeing angels or hearing beautiful singing. "No," she replied, "but I have peace, and that's worth more than anything."

I'll never forget those words. In that moment I knew without a doubt she had full confidence of her salvation in Jesus, Who would take her to her heavenly home with Him when her earthly body ultimately failed her. There truly is nothing worth more than the peace of knowing in your heart of hearts that your sins are forgiven, that God loves you with an unfathomable and unshakable love, and that when your earthly life is ended, it's not the end: that more joy and peace and love than you can ever imagine awaits you in Heaven with Jesus. She knew this because she had trusted Him to forgive her sins, had accepted His death as atonement for them, and believed in His resurrection from the dead (which won the victory over death for all of us, so that we too can live forever with Him).

My prayer is that we can all have such confidence and peace because of our faith in Jesus as our Savior and Lord. My mother left me with many wonderful memories and a love that will continue to nurture me. But the most wonderful gift she gave me was teaching me about Jesus. The peace that comes from knowing Him truly is worth more than anything!

"But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them who are asleep, that you sorrow not, even as others who have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also who sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not precede them who are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words." (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18)

© 2012 Fern Horst

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