When He Returns, With Him I’ll Rise

(written December 9, 2011)
I’ll have to admit, when Haddon’s grave marker came I didn’t feel ready to see it. Even though I wanted him to have one, it was difficult to see something that was going to remind me of his body, which is not where our hope lies, but our hope lies in his life now with Jesus. But I’m thankful it didn’t take me long to come to love looking at it and feeling so proud of his name that is printed in big letters. Also, our quote we decided to use on it will always remind us of what’s to come: Jesus Lives and So Shall I, When He Returns With Him I’ll Rise. I remember the first time I heard this song was very soon after Haddon passed, it was a sweet thing that the Lord brought to my ears in time of sorrow. Ernie and I both found this to be very fitting to add to his grave marker, in hopes that it will encourage others who come to the cemetery to visit their children’s graves. Ernie told me a few days ago that there is a new grave of a baby next to Haddon, and the service for this baby was just ending as he was walking up to visit Haddon’s grave. We especially hope that our words we placed on Haddon’s grave can be used by God to comfort them in their grief that has begun only days ago.

I thought I’d also bring up a fear I have, and how the Lord is growing me in it. I know at some point my memories with Haddon in the hospital will not be as detailed, and they won’t feel as if they were yesterday, sometimes that brings great fear. Usually, about once a week, as I’m trying to fall asleep, my mind goes back to the hospital and replays the nearly 5 days we were there as if I’m testing myself to see how much I’m remembering and what it is I’ve forgotten. I feel like I don’t really realize that’s what I’m doing until I’ve reached the end and I’ll think oh why do I do that? So, this is where I pray to have truthful thoughts that reflect God’s word. On this earth, my memory is affected by sin, which brings about forgetfulness or blurry memories, and a lot of precious things to me won’t always be crystal clear after time. This shows my need for Jesus, not only is my memory affected by sin, but everything is. Also, if I really think about why I’m so afraid to lose details about Haddon, what it comes down to is me fearing that it affects him somehow. His brothers and sisters will have memories with us and we will treasure those, so I don’t want to lose any short moments we had with Haddon and my heart frets. But this isn’t what God wants for us, when the things he gives us on earth are gone or begin to fade, he does not want us to fret or put our firm hope in them. My hope is not in detailed memories of Haddon, but that he is standing with Jesus, and we know that when those of us who belong to Jesus actually see him face to face, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is (1 John 3:2).

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