Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. - 1 Thessalonians 4:13, NIV
When I was small, my grandmother lived right across the street from where I lived with my family. Whenever I got sick or just wanted someone to read to me or sew for me or fix me something special to eat, I went across to her house. She taught me, read to me, played with me, fed me, and nursed me. When she died, I felt as if a part of myself had died. To this day, in unguarded moments, I still weep with that yearning, homesick feeling just to hear her voice or to see her smile or to feel her hug.
Paul says it is all right to grieve, even more than twenty years after her death. But I am not to grieve as one who has no hope, because we believe that the same Jesus Who died on the cross to offer us forgiveness of sin, and the same Jesus Who was raised from the dead to give us eternal life is the same Jesus Who one day will come again! And when He comes, “God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in Him.” When He comes, He will bring my grandmother with Him!