When we give the talk, it naturally causes many emotions to surface… both for us and for those listening. People identify with our pain, but they also re-enter their own stories of trial and loss… and this, of course, can bring tender tears.
As the group was sharing thoughts and reflections at the end of Jana and my presentation the other day, one gentlemen in the crowd (I will call him “Bill”) shared, though the tears, that his wife of many years had died of cancer a few months ago.He went on to say that, naturally, in his grief, he had been struggling to let go.
And then, with a tight throat and tears streaming down his cheeks, Bill shared the following experience which took place fairly recently.
Then suddenly he heard his wife come to him and speak the following words, as clear as day:
“I’m not coming back.”
“I CAN’T come back.”
“Bill… I DON’T WANT to come back.”
When he shared that last word with us, a hush came over the room. I believe everyone of us hearing his story knew what he clearly knew: He had been given a great gift from God. And though he is certainly still grieving, as he NEEDS to do… at the very same time, his tears while telling this story were tears not ONLY of grief… but tears of assurance… with a hint of peace and joy.
Through this gift of God, his wife was reminding him that in Jesus something far greater awaits us on the other side. And so she blessed him (and now all of us) with incredible words of hope.
The Bible says: “For we do not grieve as those who have no hope.” (I Thessalonians 4:13) and “I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.” (Romans 8:18).
Hear that truth in this woman’s words to her husband: “I’m not coming back. I can’t come back. I don’t WANT to come back.”
Unforgettable words. Undeniable Hope. Unstoppable Savior.
I look forward to not wanting to come back as well.