Absent from the Body, Present with the Lord

I will try to write a longer reflection tomorrow when I am back in Chicago but I wanted friends to know that my dear mother passed into the presence of her Lord this day at 12:05 p.m. I was there, saw her take her last breath, and rejoiced in her seeing the King of Glory. She took two deep breaths, moved her eyes slightly, and was gone, in an instant really. It was one of the most profound experiences I have ever had. I had been praying over her the hour before she died and thus was praying prayers of preparation for body and soul as she embarked upon her final journey. I believe she was ready in every possible way to go. I am at peace, rejoice in God’s grace, thank so many of you for praying and look forward to preaching the gospel at her funeral this weekend.

God willing I will preach from 1 Thessalonians 5:18 on Sunday morning in two services at Southwood Presbyterian Church in Huntsville, Alabama. Then at 2 p.m. I will preach at mom’s funeral service and help lead her burial service. My good friend, Dr. Michael Honeycutt, pastor of Southwood, will lead the service and assist me. I could not do this without him. Mike has become a truly dear friend to me and got to know and love my mom the last six years.

The great comfort tonight is that the Word of God says in no uncertain terms: "Absent from the body, present with the Lord." Marie Armstrong is gazing on the face of the one she loved her entire life. She is at peace. I miss her but can let her go to him with deep joy.

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