Sunday, 29 November -0001 18:42

Youth Page

Written by Peter Langbroek
March 10, 2002:
It was Grandpa's birthday at Uncle Gerald and Aunt Lydia's house. Caleb was playing with Uncle Casey in the kitchen. In the living room sat Grandpa. Around him sat his children, grandchildren, and his first great-grandchild, Joshua Peter. The room was filled with laughter and chatter from a few conversations back and forth.

"There's lots of food in the kitchen. Just help yourself!" said Aunt Lydia above the voices.

"Caleb, come to the living room," called his mommy.

A few seconds later, Caleb scurried from the kitchen followed by Uncle Casey.

"My drove the car down de stairs, Mommy!" Caleb giggled.

"Be careful, you don't want to break the car. Aunt Lydia will be very sad," said Caleb's mommy, picking up on her laugh.

She turned to Aunt Jane, "He can sit on my lap while there's still room," she chuckled, patting her stomach.

Uncle Gerald looked at Caleb's daddy. "Can you read the Bible and open with prayer?" he asked.

"Sure."

Uncle Gerald gave him the Bible. For a moment, Caleb's daddy wondered what he should read. He looked at his father. He thought of the generations surrounding him, of his son and a daughter to be born. He looked at Betty. She would soon give birth to another great-grandchild.

Uncle Gerald gave some cues for everyone to be quiet. "I will read the last part of Psalm 22, verses 22-31. He read:

"... All they that be fat upon earth shall eat and worship: all they that go down to the dust shall bow before him: and none can keep alive his own soul. A seed shall serve him; it shall be accounted to the Lord for a generation. They shall come, and shall declare his righteousness unto a people that shall be born, that he hath done this."

March 29, 2002: Good Friday
Caleb and his mommy walked into the hospital room. In the bed lay Grandpa. Around him stood his children and grandchildren. Grandma sat beside him, holding his hand. "Caroline is here with Caleb," she said, calling into his ear. Beside her stood the minister.

Caleb got near to the bed. He looked down. "What those buttons for, Mom."

"Those buttons put the bed up and down. Don't touch them or Grandpa will sit up."

"Grandpa sleeping, right Mom?" asked Caleb.

"Yes, Grandpa is sleeping."

"He can't talk!"

There was solemn silence for a moment. The minister asked Aunt Jane to get the Psalters from the window ledge. The Psalters were passed around the bed.

He spoke up, "Brother George, your husband, father, and grandfather always loved LordÕs Day 1 of the Heidelberg Catechism. He had it memorized in Dutch and English. It would be so fitting for us to recite it out loud."

He walked to Caleb's Grandpa and spoke into his ear. "Brother George, it's Good Friday today! Jesus died for your sins on that Friday. Soon, you will be with Him in heaven! We're going to read Lord's Day 1 together to you!" There were a few seconds of solemn silence. Grandma, the children, and grandchildren recited: "What is thy only comfort in life and in death?

That I with body and soul, both in life and in death, am not my own, but belong to my faithful Saviour Jesus Christ; who, with His precious blood, hath fully satisfied for all my sins, and delivered me from all the power of the devil; and so preserves me that without the will of my heavenly Father, not a hair can fall from my head; yea, that all things must be subservient to my salvation, and therefore, by His Holy Spirit, he also assures me of eternal life, and makes me sincerely willing and ready, henceforth, to live with him."

April 11, 2002: At Grandma's house
In the kitchen, around the round table, sat Caleb next to Grandma and his Mommy. Grandma was bringing a spoon of soup to her mouth. Caleb looked at Grandma.

"Grandpa is in heaven, right Granma?"

Grandma paused. Her eyes welled with tears. "Yes, he is with the Lord."

"Yes, he is with the Lord," Caleb repeated while taking a bite of his grilled cheese sandwich.

A Personal Note:
Boys and Girls; I share this true personal story with you because, as one called by God to teach children, I must present you with death. There are those of you that have already experienced death in your family. This story may bring back memories. But there are those of you who must prepare for what will happen sooner or later.

Looking back, I thank God for the blessing of a God-fearing father. If that is your case, you are very rich. Looking back, I know more deeply of that one command with a promise, "Honour your father and mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth theeÓ (Exodus 20: 12).

Honour your parents, grand-parents, and/or great-grandparents while they are with you. Also, death will meet us soon if Christ does not meet us sooner in His coming. Let us all watch and be ready, so our death will be an entrance into the kingdom of heaven, with Christ who gave salvation through His death on the cross.

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