Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Remembering My Aunt Rosemary

It was late Sunday evening January 19th when I was able to talk to my Uncle Bill. He, my cousins, their children, and their pastor had gathered at the hospital to wait. Aunt Rosemary was taken to the hospital earlier in the day with critical vitals, and doctors had just said that my aunt was septic, and that her systems were slowly going to be shutting down. And now, as you read this, my aunt has left this world to be with her King Jesus.

As I prayed with my uncle over the phone Sunday night, I burst into tears. Not because my aunt was not destined for a better place, but because of the great void she will leave behind here. My mind flooded with an incredible array of memories of my aunt and the way she cared for me and so many others.

My family's loss is heaven's gain. My aunt fought a number of illnesses during the years I knew her, but that's just the thing. She fought. She fought the good fight and finished the race. There was a point in time a few years ago, that the doctors had said she was dying, but she fought back to stay because she wanted more time with her family and people she loved.

Aunt Rosemary was always quick to open her home and give generously of her resources to help others. For several years, she and Uncle Bill supported the work I was doing with Great Commission Ministries, and I know she supported many other activities in the area. She always opened her home and made sure that my cousins' children, Brandon and Liz, always had a safe environment for themselves and their friends from school to hang out.

Aunt Rosemary was very proud of her sons and her family members for their accomplishments, and LOVED having visitors. I can remember many visits, even when my aunt wasn't feeling well, when she would hear the voices of company in the living room of the house, she would rally the energy to come visit, sit for a spell, and catch up with folks.

While Aunt Rosemary is already with Jesus, it is my prayer that those of us she left behind would continue to honor her legacy of love for God, compassion, and hospitality. The world could use more people who live the quality life of character of my Aunt Rosemary.

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