Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Keep the Faith!

I'm not really sure why I cannot get better at being consistent in writing on this crazy blog thing. Know that I have thought about things to write. A Lot! It's just finding the time to sit and write. Then there's the whole "make it look cool" aspect (that all my friends that blog do so well) that I just never seem to get right! I'm thinking right now, we're just lucky that I'm finding a moment in my craziness to jot down a few of my many random thoughts!! And I'm just assuming that you're feeling it's a good thing that I've posted another random posting. I mean, you must want to read what I write or you wouldn't have even clicked on the link to be here!! (thanks, by the way!)

So recently, I had a very dear friend say her final goodbyes to me and all the people that she loves. It has been (and still is) a difficult time, to say the least. It has been a time for me to do a lot of pondering, praying, reading, and all that kind of stuff! On one of the last days that I had to spend visiting with my friend, I kept thinking about a specific scripture. It was something my Mission President use to say all the time. He never really said goodbye when he was done visiting with you. He would simply say, "Keep the Faith". I kept thinking about the scripture where this originated from and how Paul was saying that he had kept the faith after a long, difficult ministry. So I looked it up to see if it was really something that would be relevant (have you ever had a scripture come to your mind in relation to a situation, only to look it up and find that it isn't really what you were thinking it was? Well, I had to see if this would be one of those times). The scripture is in 2 Timothy chapter 4. Here's what I read:

For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand.
I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:
Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.
Do thy diligence to come shortly unto me:

It fit this situation to a "T". My friend had indeed fought a good fight. She has battled kidney failure for many years. She endured two transplants that her body eventually rejected and a third transplant just wasn't in the plan for her. Over the years, I have had the privilege to witness her faith buoy her up. And not just her, but all those around her! She set the example for me to follow of one who is willing to keep the faith at all time, in all places and in all circumstances.

It was clear that she knew that her time to return Home had come--that the time of her departure was at hand. She accepted that without fear. Without anger. Without regrets. And it is a comfort to feel certain that truly a crown of righteousness awaits her. I hope that I can live my life so that when the time comes for my departure I can say with confidence that I have fought a good fight, that I have finished my course and that I have kept the faith!

As we read this scripture together~my friend, her husband, me and my husband and other friends that had gathered--the Spirit bore witness that she had indeed finished her course. All that she was to do had been done. It was her time to depart us here and return Home where she would find many more loved ones waiting for her. Including a son and a brother. Her husband ask that I design something that he could have hanging in his home with this scripture. Here is the result of his request (please excuse the watermark with my copyright).

I have had this printed up and will deliver the framed piece to my dear friend's husband tonight. I hope and pray that it can bring peace and hope to his heart and fill his soul with determination to fight the fight that lies ahead of him, to finish his course and keep the faith!!

May we all find it within us to
"Keep the Faith!"