Quite often on a “blogiversary” post or a blogging meme, many bloggers who have been at it for any length of time will comment that, whatever their reasons for starting a blog, one of the things that surprised them was the sense of community among bloggers. Once we find certain blogging friends, they become true friends.
I was very saddened to learn yesterday that a member of the blogging community had passed away. Dr. John at Dr. John’s Fortress went Home on Monday. I didn’t know him very well — I read his blog here and there, and we occasionally crossed paths when we participated in the same memes. But what I knew of him came mostly from his comments on mutual friends’ blogs. And one thing stood out: being a pastor wasn’t just a job from which he was retired: a pastor is what and who he was in his very essence.
Somehow we don’t think about heaven much until someone dies. Elisabeth Elliot once wrote than one reason we don’t know much about it is that we wouldn’t be able to concentrate on what we’re to do here if we knew all the dazzling glory awaiting us there. We do know there will be no more death, sorrow, crying, pain or sin and that God is there. That’s plenty to ponder and to look forward to! I am so grateful He made a way for sinners to be washed, cleansed, forgiven and fit for heaven, and that we can know that those who trusted in Him for their salvation are experiencing heaven’s joys as soon as they pass on.
We couldn’t wish them back from what they are experiencing now. But we do miss them, incredibly, achingly. Through time, grace, love and support, that ache will lessen to some degree, though it will never go away completely until we join them there. If you’re so led, I invite you to join me in prayer for the family and friends of Dr. John in the days ahead. And if you don’t know whether you would be joining that reunion in heaven, please read the verses linked above or read more here.
Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am. John 17:24a.