Written by: Cindy Morrone
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16
I love Easter; it is my most, favourite holiday (mmmhmm, even more than Christmas)! I love the colours, the spring time, the outfits, the cute bunnies and the chocolate. And all that it represents….eternal hope.
Little did I know the impact one Easter celebration would have on me.
It was like any other church going morning, where an intricate, orchestration of cleaning, feeding and dressing ourselves has to happen in a timely manner. This morning was a little different though, firstly because it wasn’t a Sunday, but a Friday and secondly, because it was Good Friday; a most holy day. The excitement of spring and the anticipation of Easter just around the corner followed us all the way to church.
We were dressed in our best and I so, looked forward to the service; a time to reflect. There was no sign or feeling or thought that this Good Friday service would be different than any other. The sanctuary was filled with us who hold this holiday as one revered, and we treasured the most precious gift. The gift of our Saviour giving of Himself to save us; to restore our relationship with our Abba, Father……eternal hope.
It was then, at the end of the service that we were hit; blindsided and swept into mourning. I remember someone running to us in the halls of the church telling us we needed to go to our youth Pastor’s office right away; that there was an emergency. Although we didn’t know why, we just began to run. The phone was handed to my husband and he had to listen to his precious sister through her weeping, tell him his Mother had passed away, suddenly, instantly, that very morning, as we sang hymns and reflected on the death of our Saviour.
We had no idea; there was no warning, not a single inclination……
Still dressed in our Sunday best, we were driven to the hospital (thank you Pastor) with the strangest sense of time. There was an anticipation to get there as soon as possible but with such a reluctance to go; time seemed to stand still. I remember noticing those who passed by in their cars, or carried on with their yard work and couldn’t help to wonder how they did that.
Didn’t they know, couldn’t they see that our world had stopped?
Once at the hospital, saying goodbye was one of the hardest things we’ve had to do.
That morning so much changed…..
Grieving is different for everyone. My husband mourned differently than me and I different from him. My precious daughters also grieved in their own way; one slept in their Nonna’s bedding and the other wanted to eat her pasta all the time.
There is hole left by her passing that will never be filled by anyone else. There is a place that remains empty in the here and now.
Sometime later, I remember cleaning after supper and stepping out into our back yard I looked up into the night sky. I was overcome by grief; weeping; I missed her. I don’t know what triggered that moment but the pain was deep. I cried out to my God and asked Him for comfort. Immediately then, a ‘knowing’ swept over me; a peace, an assurance that she was in a better place, a place where she didn’t ever want to come back. She was more than well and we would see each other again.
I can’t help but to reflect on what happened that first Good Friday.
A broken relationship was eternally bond by the death of the very Son of God who hung on a cross. But the grave couldn’t keep Him for He was raised on the third day! It is in that sacrifice that eternal hope is offered.
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 6:23)
Everything changed……and eternal hope was given.
Dear Heavenly and Gracious Father,
It is impossible to come up with the words to offer our thanks for Your sacrifice. Prepare our hearts, this very Easter season, to truly realize the sacrifice or Your One and only Son and what difference that can make for us and our loved ones.
Cindy is a daughter of the great I Am; the one ‘who is, and who was, and who is to come’. A true county girl, she has lived most of her life in the small towns of southwestern Ontario. Cindy has been married to the man God handpicked for her for 20 years. They have two amazing identical twin daughters that were hand delivered by God. Just recently Cindy has officially become a stay at home, homeschooling Mom. And even more recently has been obedient to the call of fostering. She has a passion for speaking and is dedicated to the youth ministry at her home church. Cindy is honoured to be a part of, “We Are His Daughters” and counts her friendship with Mandy as one of God’s richest blessings.