The Eventual Summons To Return Home

Jeff Bible, Family, General, Hope, Salvation

“Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.” – Isaiah 43:1 {ESV}

As I think of the distinct possibility of earth saying goodbye to one of the finest Christians I ever knew, I think of the joy that will be instantaneously hers.  Deborah Samples is scheduled to have all of her life support equipment removed sometime today.  My prayer has been and continues to be that God would mercifully remove her from this world.  Her heart and mind and soul have longed to be released from earth’s limitations for a long time before this car accident.  She is not afraid of death and all that is important to her here is in capable hands; Deborah’s life work has been valuable and there seems nothing remaining for her to do.  My mother in law is very close and I wish her the most peaceful of exits from here…and a celebratory entrance there.

The excerpt above from Isaiah comforts me because it is akin to what Deborah (and all believers) will experience when our departure date finds us.  When God says in that verse that He has called Israel by name, it is not simply that He named Israel.  The Hebrew verb indicates that God is speaking of a summons, an invitation which requires the one being called to obey by presenting himself.  He tells us not to be afraid because we are His alone.  Isn’t that true?  Deborah is Danny’s wife.  She is Amy and Mark’s mother.  Deborah Samples is the one and only MaMa to Alicia and Landon.  She belongs as a sister to several brothers and sisters of her own.  Yet, in the end, she is God’s and His alone.  He summons her and none of our protests can sway Him.  He loves her more than we could ever begin to love her.  He has provided for her during her earthly journey and has been preparing a place for her in the heaven of heavens.  I discern that it is time for her to move up and forward where she will enter into the fullness of her inheritance.  How could we wish to deny this to her?

When your day comes, are you ready?  Will his summons catch you unprepared?  It has been wisely said that all of us have an unavoidable date with dust.  God has declared through His Son that we need not fear this appointment.  If we have been graced to bow before the throne of Jesus Christ then we have all that we need for our departure from the finite vapor into the fullness of victory.  In each of us who has believed, we sense a longing to go there.  We will see things that we have never fathomed.  There will indeed be the glorious reunion – far more than being sentimental, this assurance is glorious because we will be free from all that ever obscured our personal experience of God Himself.  The ecstasy of Heaven is not that I will see my loved ones again.  Heaven’s pinnacle is that we will finally rest glorified eyes upon our Master, Savior, Shepherd, Protector, Provider, God and King.

Deborah may very well see Him before our sun sets today.  When will you see Him?  He inevitably summons us all into His presence-some for an embrace and some for a banishing.  In the end, we will all answer His call.  Summoned…I long for that call upon me.  May his immeasurable grace have me fully fit for my own departure and arrival.  May the same be your reality.