After tearing up during Sunday's music, I decided to add hymns to my daily quiet time. This morning I dug out my faithful Worship & Service Hymnal (anyone out there of an age to remember and appreciate that volume?) and started with the first song: "A Mighty Fortress Is Our God."
Luther was probably talking about the divisions and persecution brought on his followers during the reformation, but it still applies:
Let goods and kindred go; this mortal life also. The body they may kill. His truth abideth still. His kingdom is forever.
I thought about those wonderful porcelain dolls that Jolene had given away in the months before her death. Mom and I loved looking for dark-haired, brown-eyed dolls that resembled Jolene. I can still picture some of the dolls from her collection: Natty Gunn, Anastasia, Alabama, Lady Bug, Guadalupe, Arwen. I want at least one of them, a physical reminder of precious memories. I expect I’ll revisit the subject of material possessions this weekend, when Jaran is in Denver helping us sort through Jolene’s things. Do I have the strength to let her “goods” go?
The hymn affirms that Jolene is with God, in His eternal kingdom. God has not changed. Jolene’s suicide does not alter her choice, made as a young child, to come to God the Father through faith in His Son Jesus Christ.
Footnote: At work yesterday, I checked out my perpetual calendar. The page still read March 17th. For the past five weeks, time stood still. I flipped the page to April 21st, a small but symbolic step forward into the rest of my life.