Thanks again for your prayers and wonderful letters of encouragement and support. I am really thankful to God that so many of you would think about our family and most, importantly, pray for us.
I also grieve with you who have also had loved ones die; your letters and entries have been especially meaningful.
I have to say, I have deep, deep moments of sorrow, missing my son. It was only the Thursday before last, July 24, that he left us for heaven.
The Bible tells us there is a place for mourning. As Solomon reminds us in the book of Ecclesiastes:
To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; A time to plant, and a time to pluck what is planted; A time to kill, and a time to heal; A time to break down, and a time to build up; A time to weep, and a time to laugh; A time to mourn, and a time to dance. (Ecclesiastes 3:1-4)
A season of mourning
So, for now, this is a season of mourning.
Some would say, “But Greg, your son is in heaven. Why mourn?”
Why? Because I miss him.
I don’t mourn for Topher (his nickname), for he is in the very presence of God. I mourn for us, his dear wife, children, and all of his friends who loved him.
Christopher was a happy, funny, creative person to hang out with, and his presence for those who knew him is missed in a huge way.
We mourn because we loved and love. Our depth of sorrow is an indication of our depth of love.
But the difference between the mourning of a nonbeliever and a believer is this. The believer’s sadness is mingled with hope! Paul reminded us that as believers mourning those who have gone to heaven before us, We do not sorrow as those who have no hope (see 1 Thessalonians 4:13). I have hope, because I know I will see my son again . . . in heaven!
I’ve been thinking a great deal about heaven the last few days. I also have been searching the Scripture and learning more about it than at any other time in my life.
I’m sure that will enter into what I will speak on at our upcoming Harvest Crusade in Anaheim, which believe it or not, is only eight days away!
I would appreciate your prayer as I seek to share the messages on the three nights of this event that will be from God’s heart and will show people their very real need for Jesus Christ.
A time to laugh!
There have been moments of joy too!
Solomon told us there is also a place to “laugh and dance.” Now, I am not very good at that (dancing, that is), but my granddaughter Stella is!
Yesterday, we got out some little toy musical instruments – Cathe on tambourine, Jonathan on some kind of rattle, and Grandpa on drums – and we put some happy music on and Stella jumped around the room with delight. We all laughed and had a great time.
I hope you will do something like that with your family today.
Talk to you soon . . .