Jean Keller Funeral Sermon - Psalm 23, John 14 June 28th 2019 / Call
Text: Psalm 23, John 14
Intr – How do these calls sound to you, do they make any sense at all?
Kelly’s Eye 1 /Garden Gate 8 /Young and Keen 15 /Two Little Ducks 22 /Dirty Gertie 30 /Buckle My Shoe 32 /Clickety Click 66 /Two Fat Ladies 88.
If you are familiar with Jean’s preferences, you know what those are: Bingo calls. I know that they may vary from place to place, so there may be some of these that would be named differently. Still, bingo calls are part of the fun involved with playing it. I’ve learned from family that among many other features, Jean loved Bingos. Perhaps not very much because of the game/luck side but all the fun and company involved when you are playing.
If you are a bingo player, and if you go to a place that uses these type of calls, you are familiar with them. Nobody needs to explain it to you. The moment you hear them, you know which number they are referring to.
When we gather together for a Funeral Service, it is always something challenging for us, because we don’t like death. We appreciate life, we love to live. Still death is a part of what we experience in life and we need to deal with it. Now, when it comes to this topic there are familiar words, familiar phrases and expressions that as we hear in faith we immediately identify them, where they are from and what meaning and comfort they bring to life. Jesus’ Words. Some of them we heard in the readings today
_The Lord is my shepherd – This reminds us that we do not wander astray in this world. In faith – the gift that Jean and all baptized received in their Baptism- we have a shepherd who feeds us and guides us.
_I am the way the Truth and the life – This one is foundational. Jesus is telling us that whenever we want to experience life and truth in its fullness, whenever we want to know that we’re walking in the right direction, this will happen by placing faith in Him. This is even more significant as we mourn the death of a loved one as we do today.
_Goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life. It doesn’t say “some days”, it doesn’t say which or how many years; it doesn’t say “there are some exceptions though”. King David doesn’t leave room for doubt: all the days of my life.
_Do not let your hearts be troubled – A really important call. Jesus guarantees us of His presence in our hearts by faith, to comfort us, to walk with us in life, to point us to the promise of the resurrection of the dead and life everlasting we have in Him. Even when and if we have hearts problems, in Him we are protected from a troubled heart.
Family shared with me also about Jean’s selflessness. She would be up to help anyone who needed help. Also, she would do anything for her grandkids. If we, human beings like Jean, you and I, can do good things for others, think about Christ selflessly going to a Cross allowing himself to be killed even being innocent - just because he loved you and me; just because He wanted to give us forgiveness and life. He wanted to give us comfort and peace when the time comes when we have to face death and fear. When our self was helpless He became our Hope, selflessly.
Now, if you allow me I will still do a crossover of calls here to underline this blessed assurance we have in Him:
Gateway to Heaven (#27) – Jesus is the door that leads us into eternal life. In Him we are called everyday to repentance, forgiveness and new life.
Saving Grace (#68) – God’s love for you doesn’t depend on your look, your social condition, your bank account, your…nothing. We are saved by His Saving Grace, freely bestowed on us through Jesus Christ. We can always call upon His name, upon His Grace, upon His love.
Heaven’s Gate (#)78 - This is where we will be on the last day, after we are called from death to life again. We’ll be reunited with our loves ones who departed ahead of us in faith. Heaven’s Gate is the Doorway to an eternity full of happiness with Christ.
Cc – Dear friends, Jean as already been called by Christ. As we carry on in life, following our calls, hearing God’s call through His Word, we can rest assured in Christ that when our last call comes, in our last hour we will hear His voice calling us into His eternal home. A place where company and lots of fun is something we will never be short of.