Eulogy for my Mother

Hi, my name is James. My mom called me Clint, as do a lot of you. My youngest nephew Boston calls me Uncle Clean It because of my sisters very slight country accent. Enough about me, let me tell you about my mom.

We wait in hope for the LORD; he is our help and our shield.“In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name.May your unfailing love be with us, LORD, even as we put our hope in you.”

Psalm 33: 20-22

I read this verse so many times on her wall while sitting atmom’s bedside these last weeks, and I found great comfort in this Psalm of David.

But guess what?

My Mother is with Jesus, the fullness of the mystery of our salvation fully revealed to my mom! We have no idea how big the Love of God is, but we will know. Just like my mom is finding out right now.

“Now we see a reflection in a mirror; then we will see face-to-face. Now I know partially, but then I will know completely in the same way that I have been completely known.”

1 Corinthians 13:12

My mom was a woman of passion and drive. When Julia and I were younger, she did everything she could to ensure a better life for us. She went back to school, she worked multiple jobs at times to provide for us. She dragged me to church in my awkward teenage years, as a result I met Jesus through her. Her passion and drive rubbed off on me. I am who I am because of her.
Everyone in this room can say they too have been influenced by her and her love for Jesus.

Now I know what you are thinking, you want to hear me talk about my mom. How my mom is probably organizing a heavenly dance team, or annoying everyone with her camera, or like her grandchildren Boston and Braylin said she is probably beating Jesus at Uno, gosh she was the
queen of Uno. Maybe she is teaching everyone how to make the best cookies like she taught my niece Zoey, or convincing everyone to cheer my nephew Michael on while he plays basketball.

I know one thing for certain, that she is the treasure in the field that Jesus sold everything for. We all are, but she now sees the fullness of that love in ways we cannot even fathom.

I will miss my mom greatly until I see her again. I know to be absent from this earthly temple is to be present with Jesus and that is exactly where she is, in my Heavenly Papa’s arms.

Thank you all for coming, we love you.

Hard Times

My mom is dying...

Those are words I knew would come sooner or later, preferably later. But they are upon me like the inevitable rise of the sun, and here I am knowing the next few weeks will be hard times. I know that I need to be strong for my sister and my step father, I have to be strong for everyone in my family. I know, however, that I am weak and frail on my own. 

"Go, eat rich food, and drink something sweet," he said to them, "and send portions of this to any who have nothing ready! This day is holy to our LORD. Don’t be sad, because the joy from the LORD is your strength!" Nehemiah 8:10

Don't be sad in these hard times, because the Joy of the Lord is my strength. Indeed it is. I woke yesterday to an experience I had never had, an overwhelming joy that overtook me in laughter. The Lord poured out a fresh and new experience on my, and I was drunk in the Holy Spirit. It was amazing, but what really happened is that God was taking away my anxiety and sadness pertaining to my mom and was replacing it with His Joy. My strength was renewed, and I was comforted fully knowing that mom is going to go home soon. 

Since then, even though I am sad that I am losing my mom, I am more overwhelmed with excitement that she will be dancing in the throne room of God soon. She will be able to ride horses with Jesus. She will be able to sing, and be glad in the presence of the God of the universe. 

Jesus said that the Gospel is like a man who finds a treasure hidden in a field, he goes and sells everything just so he can buy the land where that treasure is. My mom is that treasure. I see it right now, Jesus sitting the head of her bed running his fingers through her hair, He is crazy about her, and soon she will be in His rest. 

My mom is only 57, and it really stinks that she is enduring the pain and this horrible disease. But soon she will be in the midst of her long deserved reward. 

I Love You Mom...

The Awakening

I became a Christian at the age of 16, I didn't know much, but having essentially grown up in the church I was pretty versed on the language of christianese. We all know it, and we all have been prone to speaking it. Depending on the stream in which you learned, the language could have different varieties, but still the same language.

Early on it was exciting and fresh, I had amazing friends that helped to encourage me, and life was good. This is not going to be a blog where I begin by telling some sob story in the attempt to get hits on my website, or even listens on my podcast. Although both would be nice, that isn't my intention. My intention here is to share my heart, a heart that has been quickly changing these last few weeks, making me question stuff I had always taken for granted, and forcing me into the newness of my faith again. 

My faith had grown pretty stagnate in the last few years, and even though I was doing my podcast, I sang on the worship team at my church, I still struggled hard with issues of sin that would creep up. I would berate myself after I failed, and would continually remind myself of the disgust that God obviously had for me. Or so I thought. 

A few years ago a good friend of me introduced me to John Crowder, and in the beginning I just wasn't in the headspace to receive what he was teaching. Then about three months ago I was reintroduced to him, I decided to give him another shot. A new friend that I met on Facebook sent me his book "Mystical Union" in audio format, and it has totally wrecked me. The first chapter John constantly reminds us that as saints we are not bound to sin anymore, in fact we are dead to it, and alive to Christ.

Even so consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus. Romans 6:11 NAS

We are so dead to sin that we don't have to sin, we aren't bound to it. This is not about striving to do something that we are incapable of doing. If we were incapable of avoiding sin, then the letters of Paul would prove impossible. Paul constantly encouraged us (the Church) to avoid sin, to not present our bodies to sin. 

When I first heard John emphatically teach this in the first chapter of his book, I spoke to myself out loud and said, how do I do this? That's impossible to avoid sin, I was born in it and am incapable of resisting it. He issued a challenge, read Romans 6 everyday for a year. Not I will honestly say I have not done that, but the first day I listened and read Romans 6 at least 5 times, and since I have read it on several other occasions. 

Since I have been studying this, I have posted thought after thought on Facebook, stirring up many different discussions, some downright hostile. I have had a few that think I am not a believer anymore, some think I have lost my mind. I have had people saying that if I claim I am without sin than I must not have the love of God in me. Not that I have ever claimed to be without sin, only that I don't have to sin anymore. 

This has forced me to be more excited about my relationship with Daddy than ever before. I realize that He didn't just rend the heavens to save me, but to redeem me. He redeemed me and my experiences, He redeemed me and my identity. He took this dirty, broken guy, put His finest robe on my shoulders, and a ring of His Authority on my finger. 

I am under obligation, as Paul was in Romans 1, to share this, the Gospel, with everyone I come into contact with. So this is where I am at. I plan on writing more, but this is just a start.  If you like the blog please share it, share my podcast. Thanks for reading and listening!