September 18

Written by Bill Grandi on September 18th, 2023

Jo and I and our daughter traveled an hour away yesterday afternoon to attend the Celebration of Life of a friend. On August 23rd I wrote about us attending a funeral visitation of a friend. That visitation was on Tuesday, the 22nd. On Wednesday, the 23rd, I made my way to the hospital to visit a friend from that same town who was in the hospice unit. It was a matter of time for her to pass. Both families were tied together by blood and hearts. On Saturday, the 26th that friend went to be with Jesus. Due to various circumstances, they had to wait almost a month to honor their mom.

One of the qualities of this friend people kept talking about was her sweet spirit. I have known her as a pastor and a friend since 1987 and never once did I ever hear a cross word or a bad mouth about anyone come from her lips. In fact, on display by all who knew her and spoke of her was her tender, gentle heart. That heart came from her deep and committed relationship to Jesus Christ. It permeated every part of her. If there was someone of whom it could said “every joint, every bone, every muscle, every fiber of her being was locked on to Jesus,” it would be her.

I think the best words I could say-that I want said about me when my days are done-is that she loved. There is a passage of Scripture which I think sums up Sherri’s life. I’ll let it speak for itself and say the rest of my words:

“Let no unwholesome word come out of your mouth, but if there is any good word for edification according to the need of the moment, say that, so that it will give grace to those who hear…All bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and slander must be removed from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, compassionate, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you. Therefore, be imitators of God, as beloved children; and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.” (Eph. 4: 29, 31-5:2 NASB2020)

What words would you want said about you if people gather to celebrate your life?


8 Comments so far ↓

  1. More praiseworthy words about someone’s life could not be uttered . . .
    Blessings, Bill!

  2. Ryan S. says:

    I have been reading (and listening) to a book my eldest son got me for Christmas called The Warrior Poet Way. It is written by retired Army Ranger, John Lovell. He is the founder of the Warrior Poet Society. He writes in his book about the importance of writing a death letter, which was required of them prior to any deployment. As I read your post this morning, it reminded me again of the importance of identifying those things that really matter in this life.

    To answer your question…
    That I am a forgiven son of the Living God.
    That I loved my wife and family well.
    That I faced challenges head on.
    I lived a life not wasted.

    I am sure there are other things that will and could be said. Perhaps even more important things.
    But the life I continue to live will hopefully lean in the positive direction.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      I like your words Ryan. And speaking from an outsider (but friend) I believe you fulfill these words.

  3. gail says:

    Deep self introspection for a monday morning:
    -That I am the daughter of My Lord
    and Savior, looked forward to
    being called home
    -My life was improved and showed
    big changes when I was saved
    -I was loving and caring
    daughter, sister, aunt, great
    aunt, friend, coworker, and if you
    needed help I was there for you
    -I hope you knew how much I loved
    you, thought of you and prayed for
    -I hope if you knew me, I shined
    God’s light on you, and I made you
    Last thing is I want to see you in heaven someday, so make sure you are saved, or get saved, because its really important to me that I get to see you in heaven someday

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Thank you for your honest introspection Gail. Those are great thoughts I sincerely hope folks are given those words.

  4. Cheryl says:

    Such a sobering thought to contemplate! May it be said that there wasn’t a part of me that didn’t love Jesus with every fiber of my being. I am listening to your sermon, Pastor Bill, and it is so edifying and really feeding my soul. I got a kick out of the laughter at the beginning, too. I can just feel the sweet spirit and fellowship in your midst. If we lived close, I would definitely want to attend your church. God bless you!

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Thanks for reading the blog Cheryl! And thanks for listening. I pastor a church in a small town and we are unconventional in many ways (except in our belief in the truth). We do like to laugh and have fun. I’m glad you were able to listen and enjoy in the laughter. That makes my heart feel good to hear you say that. And I would welcome you coming. 🙂