18, No Time to Waste
"HONEY," VERN TOLD ME, "I think you ought to remember Kathi as she was. I don't think you want to see her as she is now."
He had gone in ahead of me at the funeral home and was quite shaken when he came out. But I knew deep in my heart that I had to see the body Kathi left behind. I knew it would be final for me then.
I walked into the room slowly and looked down at my second daughter. Her dark hair had been brushed and lay loosely about her face. Her bangs had been cut into a wisp on her forehead. The laughing dark eyes were closed. Kathi was gone.
While I stood there, Vern gently put his arm around me, and we both sensed the presence of God. His glory filled the room. It was so real in an unexplainable way. Instead of breaking down as I thought I might, my heart felt lighter, for I knew that this wasn't our Kathi. She was alive right now, more alive than ever, and in a way we could never realize this side of heaven.
Cindy came up beside me, and then Felicia, my mother, my brother, and our boys. Felicia tenderly laid a lovely bouquet of flowers in Kathi's hands. As I watched Felicia's face, the tears did come to my eyes. She had love and known Kathi so well, perhaps better than any of us. Kathi's last thoughts and prayers had been for Felicia. "It's my responsibility to see that you're not lost," she had written.
When the others turned to leave, I touched Kathi's hand and whispered, "Good-night honey, I'll see you in the morning." That had always been a part of our good-nights when the children were small. At the door I would turn to say, "Good-night, honey, I'll see you in the morning."
This night would be a little longer, perhaps, but the morning would come when I would see my beloved child once more.
Felicia walked to the car with us, deep in thought.
"Do you think I could talk to Pastor Smith tonight?" she asked.
Ivan Smith, our former pastor, had just arrived from the East because we had asked him to officiate at the funeral. We drove Felicia to the home where he was staying, and he took her aside.
"I want to be a Christian," she told him, "just like Kathi."
When Felicia walked back into the room where we were waiting, her face was aglow.
I hugged her; my heart was too full to speak.
Kathi's prayers were answered. Felicia had made a commitment to Jesus Christ and opened her heart and life to Him.
I remembered that day in August when we were having lunch and Kathi had said, "Now I know what I want to do with my life. I want to be a missionary."
Had she lived to an old age, Kathi might never have been able to reach Felicia as she had in death. And had she gone to the mission field as she planned, Kathi might never have reached the thousands who would soon hear the truth of the Gospel because of her death.
How true are the words of the Apostle Paul: "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God."
Table of Contents || Chapter Nineteen