Sue Sheldon's Memorial Service 3/29/2024


Sue Sheldon's Memorial Service 3/29/2024 Music are as follows: Is He Worthy? CCLI ##7108951 He Will Hold Me Fast CCLI #7016161 Scars in Heaven CCLI # 76749


Good evening beloved We are gathered here today in memory of Susan Jones Sheldon We are gathered here to worship the
Lord in her memory while this is a Service that is indeed a memorial service
It is one that ultimately exalts not man, but Jesus Christ and if anyone
For anyone who knew Sue would know that this is what she would have wanted precisely
Her church family. Thanks you for being here Josh Sheldon, thanks for being here
Jared Sheldon as well as her sister Nephews and nieces all thank you for being here.
It's a wonderful pleasure to worship the Lord together with you in her memory Psalm 116 says the following What shall
I render to the Lord for all his benefits to me? I will lift up the cup of salvation and call on the name of the
Lord I will pay my vows to the Lord in the presence of all his people Precious in the sight of the
Lord is the death of his Saints. Let us go to the Lord in prayer Dear Heavenly Father we come to you today
With hearts of gratitude that you have given us the precious gift of your son
That he stands on behalf of all those who have trusted in him Interceding We thank you for your great kindness to us you are one who
Has compassion on those who are lowly and as we are in this particular moment of sorrow
We ask that you would be pleased To grant us the consolation of your
Holy Spirit we ask that as we Turn our focus to Christ That through your word, we would have a great hope
We pray that You would give us ears to hear and hearts to receive your word nor that we might benefit from it
And we thank you for your great kindness to us and gathering us here today and then giving us your word
And In leading us our hearts and song and prayer we pray that you would continue to lead us this day
In Jesus name. Amen In your bulletin, you'll have an insert and can it be when you find that please stand and we will sing
I Oh Yeah This mercy
No Oh and spirit lay, as found in sin and nature's night.
Thine eye diffused a quickening ray, evoke the dungeon flamed with light.
My chains fell off, my heart was free, my woes went forth and followed thee.
My chains fell off, my heart was free, my woes went forth and followed thee.
No condemnation now I dread,
Jesus and all in him is mine.
A living head, enclothed in righteousness divine, bold I approach the eternal throne and claim the crown through Christ my own.
Bold I approach the eternal throne and claim the crown through Christ my own.
You may be seated. At this time, Joshua Sheldon will deliver the eulogy.
Thank you again for being here. I had to take a little humble pie from the ladies at the church when they asked how many we should plan for, and I said, oh, maybe like 80.
And they laughed at me. They actually scoffed at me. And here you all are. So thank you for being here.
That hymn was one of Sue's favorites, and the other ones we're going to sing here that you see in the bulletin.
Were also her favorites. I honored her and told her we would sing the hymns that she wrote down for us.
And there you see them. I can't, and I told her I wouldn't honor one wish that she gave before she passed.
And she said, I don't want to be mentioned. I don't want to be prominent. You laughing, you know her.
She says, just have it be about Jesus and not about me. And I said, well, honey, that's impossible. Because it's not going to be on a
Sunday, and therefore it would just be a Sunday worship service that's not on a Sunday. I said, no, you're going to be prominent.
You're going to be remembered. You're going to be loved in the memory of you. But again, thank you for being here.
I'm a bit overwhelmed. If I break down, that's okay. I thought I was doing good because for the last three, four days,
I've been taking care of things and signing papers and all that sort of stuff. And now I have nothing to do but think about my wife.
The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord. So I've joined with Job in saying that when he lost his family, we read about in the book of Job, the
Lord gave and he gave me 47 and a half years. And henceforth, I'm just going to take the liberty to round it to 48 years, 48 years of marriage.
It would have been 48 next July. It was 48 years ago when she became my wife.
He gave me her. I became her husband. And barely three weeks ago, he took her away from me, took her away from Jared, took away from all of you.
So it's not easy to join the ranks with Job, but I do say blessed be the name of the
Lord. Blessed be the name of the Lord. Sue's cancer was diagnosed late August last year.
And she went through a series of PET scans and treatments, which I won't go through all the details.
But in early February of this year, the PT scan showed that the cancer had advanced throughout her body, that despite the doctor's best efforts, it was still aggressive and still growing.
It had gone into her bones. It got into her liver. It was in her limb. It was just in all the places where you wouldn't want it to be after all those weeks and months of treatments.
She endured radiation for the bones that had cancer in it. She endured back surgery to alleviate the pain and to try and gain some mobility, which unfortunately she never did.
She endured the chemo. And after all that proved ineffective, she was treated with immunotherapy.
And maybe hardest thing of all that she endured was for about the last six months, she was basically immobile.
She couldn't get out of the lift chair that we had gotten for her or once in the hospital bed could basically not get out of that.
So it was a very, very hard time. But blessed be the name of the
Lord. Blessed be the name of the Lord, because on March 8th at about 11 o 'clock, just a couple minutes before, the
Lord God said that she's had enough. That he put an end to the pain, he put an end to the trial, put an end to the physical misery.
I say physical because physically she never lost sight of her savior, Jesus Christ. She died just before 11 o 'clock.
I was close by. I got my son who's a little bit more sensible than I am.
I said, I think she's gone. He agreed. That evening, or I should say the next morning, 1235, the next morning, the hospice nurse confirmed it.
So my wife, mother, my son, the one I met when I was 16 years old and finally won to a dating cycle when we were 18 was gone.
Well, I can't thank you all by name. It would take too long, but on behalf of Jared and myself and so many others,
I want to thank many of you who came when you were called, brought food. Many of you came in times of crisis and helped in ways that Jared and I as men couldn't.
As some of you are here now, and it was just a phone call, and then there you were. And food was left, food was brought, prayers were brought.
I just can't thank you enough. For the last few days, there were several visitors. And again,
I'm not gonna name you all by name because I'll forget one. I don't want to do that. But thank you all for everything you did to make this time endurable for us.
It was wonderful. So the day she died was filled with prayer. It was filled with scripture.
It was filled with song. Through all the pain, through all the medications that she was in at that time, she saw you, she heard you.
She joined in as much as she was able. A couple of weeks before she died, when medical hope was exhausted and seeing that the
Lord was determined to take her from my son and me, praise God, take her from us and to himself, she said she was ready.
She wanted to see Jesus. She'd had enough. I can't tell you how much
I miss her. I just can't describe it to you how much I miss her. My son, he shows differently than I do.
Gets known with different personalities, but it's really the same. It's a great whole, as many of you know, if you've been through this.
But I bless the name of Jesus Christ for ending her suffering. I can tell you with all confidence that her final breath, slowed as it was by the pain medication she was under, took her straight into the presence of Jesus Christ, her savior, and mine.
With confidence born of faith in God's word, I can tell you that she'll never again feel any pain, much less the pain she suffered with the cancer.
I can tell you with all the confidence born of faith in Jesus Christ and the word of God he's given, that she's not going to cry again because there's no tears while she's looking into the face of Jesus Christ.
There'll be no more tears, there'll be no more pain, no more anguish. And the reason for that is that the
Lord Jesus Christ will not allow it anymore for her. And God willing, all of us who one day will see him, it will be the same fate, the same destiny.
She was by nature caring, she was by nature loving. I became accustomed in her life to having a young man or woman come running up to us and saying something like, hey,
Mrs. Sheldon, remember me? Do you remember me? And there's a, oh, and you too, Mr. Sheldon, but Mrs.
Sheldon, the one who taught me in third grade Sunday school, the one who held my hand and got me through Vacation Bible School when it was a little tight.
I was intimidated by all the people and all the flurry of activity. I'll give you just one anecdote.
There was a little girl named Caitlin who in third grade Sunday school was uncontrollable by the teacher, couldn't pay attention.
She got excitable, she got out of control and the teachers didn't know what to do with her. And that was the
Sunday, was one of her first Sundays at that particular church and she decided, Sue decided to go through the hallways where the
Sunday schools were being taught and see if she could help. And so when the teacher was at her wit's end, she looks up wondering what to do and this is literally true and saw
Sue saying, hey, can I help? And she saw little
Caitlin's problem right away and allowed Caitlin to go under the desk or under the table where she felt a little more secure, a little less exposed, less stimulus and my wife just held her hand on her head.
When Caitlin got excited, just slowly stroked it and calmed her down. And this was the Caitlin came up to us one time and I think we were standing in line at Safeway.
I said, Mrs. Sheldon, remember me? And she'd been through college, she was starting a career. I'm not saying
Sue was responsible for that but Caitlin did turn a corner when she gained
Sue's care and loving patience. She had an eye for meeting needs. Jared and I in the 48 years whenever I get to around, she was my wife and Jared for his 40 something years of life have also benefited from that keen eye that she had to see the need and fill it for us.
Sue's faith in Jesus had a genuineness that made the reality of Jesus Christ behind that faith just undeniable.
She was, to use a tried and true expression, Jesus with skin on. It was about 16 years into our marriage, marriage which began
July 25th, 1976. About 16 years into that marriage, I succumbed to the
Lord Jesus Christ and confessed my faith in him. The Lord gave me a Christian wife and he used her in many ways to turn me to him.
He gave me a wife, a mother, a companion and a friend and the Lord who gives also gave her another title for me, sister.
Sister in the Lord Jesus Christ. She was my wife, she was my friend, she was the mother of my son and in the
Lord also my sister. So as much as she loved all of you, you can't compete with the place in her heart that she had for Jared and for myself.
But we couldn't compete with the place that she had in her heart for her savior Jesus Christ which is as it should be.
Well now the Lord has taken back what he so graciously gave me for, can
I round again? Half a century. And if you count back to when I met her when we were 16,
I get to say half a century. He's taken her back to himself. I say blessed be the name of the
Lord. Now she is before her ultimate husband, her perfect husband, Jesus Christ. She's spotless, she's unblemished, she is full of splendor as it says in Ephesians chapter five.
So I cannot begin to describe to you how much I miss her. Had that blessed fog for several, the last several days of just taking care of stuff.
And now I see all of you and the memories come flooding back and I miss her terribly.
I can't even say how much, I can't even describe it to myself. But I can tell you this.
That the Lord gave me a wonderful blessing and through her gave me the blessing of a son of whom
I'm so proud, my son Jared. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. And I just want to end by saying with Job and to all of you with faith in Jesus Christ, blessed be the name of the
Lord. Thank you again for all of you being here to join in this memorial with us. Thank you.
Please turn in the hymnal in front of you to hymn number 681. I will sing of my
Redeemer. When you have that, please stand.
681. I will sing of my
Redeemer and his wondrous love to me.
On the cruel cross he suffered from the curse to set me free.
Sing, oh, sing of my Redeemer.
With his blood he purchased me. On the cross he sealed my pardon, paid the debt and made me free.
I will tell the wondrous story of my lost estate to save.
In his boundless love and mercy he the ransom freely gave.
Sing, oh, sing of my Redeemer. With his blood he purchased me.
On the cross he sealed my pardon, paid the debt and made me free.
I will praise my dear Redeemer, his triumphant bow to tell.
How the victory he giveth over sin and death and hell.
Sing, oh, sing of my Redeemer. With his blood he purchased me.
On the cross he sealed my pardon, paid the debt and made me free.
I will sing of my Redeemer and his heavenly love to me.
He from death to life has brought me, son of God, with him to be.
Sing, oh, sing of my Redeemer.
With his blood he purchased me. On the cross he sealed my pardon, paid the debt and made me free.
You may be seated.
At this time, close friends of Sue's, Jeannie and Ann will deliver the scripture reading.
I will be reading three psalms and a couple of them that are Sue's favorites.
Psalm 22. My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
Why are you so far from saving me from the words of my groaning? Oh my God, I cry by day but you do not answer and by night but I find no rest.
Yet you are holy, enthroned on the praises of Israel. In you our fathers trusted.
They trusted and you delivered them. To you they cried and were rescued. In you they trusted and were not put to shame.
But I am a worm and not a man, scorned by mankind and despised by the people.
All who seek me mock me. They make mouths at me. They wag their heads. He trusts in the
Lord. Let him deliver him. Let him rescue him for he delights in him.
Yet you are he who took me from the womb. You made me trust you at my mother's breasts.
On you was I cast from my birth and from my mother's womb you have been my God. Be not far from me for trouble is near and there is none to help.
Many bulls encompass me. Strong bulls of Bashan surround me. They open wide their mouths at me like a ravening and roaring lion.
I am poured out like water and all my bones are out of joint. My heart is like wax.
It is melted within my breast. My strength is dried up like a potsherd and my tongue sticks to my jaws.
You lay me in the dust of death. For dogs encompass me. A company of evildoers encircles me.
They have pierced my hands and feet. I can count all my bones. They stare and gloat over me.
They divide my garments among them and from my clothing they cast lots. But you,
O Lord, do not be far off. O you, my help, come quickly to my aid. Deliver my soul from the sword.
My precious life from power of the dog. Save me from the mouth of the lion. You have rescued me from the horns of the wild oxen.
I will tell of your name to my brothers. In the midst of the congregation, I will praise you. You who fear the
Lord, praise him. All you offspring of Jacob, glorify him and stand in awe of him, all you offspring of Israel.
For he has not despised or abhorred the affliction of the afflicted and he has not hidden his face from him but has heard when he cried to him.
From you comes my praise in the great congregation. My vows I will perform before those who fear him.
The afflicted shall eat and be satisfied. Those who seek him shall praise the Lord. May your hearts live forever.
All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord and all the families of the nation shall worship before you.
For kingship belongs to the Lord and he rules over the nations. All the prosperous of the earth eat and worship.
Before him shall bow all who go down to the dust. Even the one who could not keep himself alive.
Posterity shall serve him. It shall be told of the Lord to the coming generation. They shall come and proclaim his righteousness to a people yet unborn that he has done it.
Psalm 23. The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness for his namesake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil. For you are with me, your rod and your staff.
They comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil.
My cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life.
And I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever. Psalm 24.
The earth is the Lord's and the fullness thereof. The world and those who dwell therein.
For he has founded it upon the seas and established it upon the rivers. Who shall ascend the hill of the
Lord? And who shall stand in his holy place? He who has clean hearts, clean hands, and a pure heart.
Who does not lift up his soul to what is false and does not swear deceitfully. He will receive blessing from the
Lord and righteousness from the God of his salvation. Such is the generation of those who seek him, who seek the face of the
God of Jacob. Lift up your heads, O gates, and be lifted up, O ancient doors, that the
King of glory may come in. Who is this King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty.
The Lord mighty in battle. Lift up your heads, O gates, and lift them up, O ancient doors, that the
King of glory may come in. Who is this King of glory? The Lord of hosts. He is the
King of glory. Amen. And from 1
Corinthians 15 verses 12 to 28. Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead?
But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain.
We are even found to be misrepresenting God because he testified about God that he raised
Christ, whom he did not raise if it was true that the dead are not raised. For if the dead are not raised, not even
Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins.
Then those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are all, of all people, most to be pitied.
But in fact, Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead.
For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive. But each of his own order.
Christ the firstfruits, then it is coming those who belong to Christ. Then comes the end when he delivers the kingdom to God the
Father after destroying every rule and every authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet.
The last enemy to be destroyed is death. For, quote,
God has put all things in subjection under his feet. End quote. But when it says, quote, all things are put in subjection, end quote, it is plain that he is accepted who put all things in subjection under him.
When all things are subjected to him, then the son himself will also be subjected to him and put all things in subjection under him, that God may be all in all.
At this time, Pastor Mike Phillips of Grace Baptist Church in Fremont will deliver the message.
May the word of the Lord be a comfort to you. Well, good afternoon.
Following Josh's lead, I too am going to disregard Sue's wishes for a moment and say something about her.
I met Sue about 20 or maybe 22 years ago or thereabouts. But I didn't know that she and I, in fact, had gone to the same high school,
James Lick. Both got a very bad education there. But on the positive side, she and I both really found the greatest bakery on earth,
Peter's Bakery, a joy that she and I shared really all of our lives.
Mostly, however, I wanted to say that my own mother -in -law died
April 20th of last year. And the last couple of years of her life, she lost most of her
English. She spoke almost 100 % Spanish at that time. But Sue would come over to see her sometimes.
And that was always the highlight of Mamasita's Week. And I thought about what in the world do they talk about?
And it occurred to me that everybody recognizes the language of love.
Everybody can speak the language of sweetness. And there are few people who spoke sweetness and love more than Sue.
So I thank God for her informal ministry here in the world.
And I thank God for her very, very precious memories to me and my wife and our family.
So thank you, Josh, for marrying her. You did very, you did way better than you deserved.
Well, I also want to read a couple of scriptures today. The first of which is
Psalm 16. And I'll probably just allude to this later in the sermon. Psalm 16, this is the word of the
Lord. Preserve me, O God, for in you I put my trust. O my soul, you have said to the
Lord, you are my Lord. My goodness is nothing apart from you.
And to the saints who are on the earth, they are the excellent ones in whom is all my delight.
Their sorrow shall be multiplied who hasten after other gods. Their drink offerings of blood
I will not offer, nor take up their names on my lips. You, O Lord, are my portion of my inheritance and my cup.
You maintain my lot. The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places.
Yes, I have a good inheritance. I will bless the Lord who has given me counsel.
My heart also instructs me in the night seasons. I have set the
Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.
Therefore, my heart is glad and my glory rejoices. My flesh also will rest in hope.
For you will not leave my soul in Sheol, nor will you allow your
Holy One to see corruption. You will show me the path of life. In your presence is fullness of joy.
At your right hand are pleasures forevermore. Amen. This is the word of the
Lord. And then in the New Testament, 1 Thessalonians chapter 4, verses 13 to 18.
1 Thessalonians 4, 13 to 18. But I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who have fallen asleep, lest you sorrow as others who have no hope.
For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with him those who sleep in Jesus.
For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the
Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep. For the
Lord himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.
Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the
Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words.
Amen. This is the word of the Lord. 22 years ago,
I was sitting about, oh, about four rows back here on my right side at the memorial service for Mrs.
Marsha Kelly. And to be honest, I don't remember much about that service.
I have no idea what psalms were sung, what scriptures were read, what the sermon was about, or even who preached it.
I just don't remember. But one thing was said that day that has stuck with me ever since.
After the sermon, a few people offered their thoughts and memories of Marsha.
And one of them was Josh Sheldon, whose words I will never forget.
That day he said, speaking of his own mother, he said, my mother died with dignity.
Marsha died with hope. And at that time,
I'm sure Josh Sheldon had no idea how much he was saying and how in that single line, the whole gospel message is bound up.
You see, Josh was right about Marsha's death and the death of everyone who dies in Christ.
Hope is the distinguishing character of the believer's death. It is not dignity.
It is not peace. It is not beauty. And certainly, it's not painlessness.
If Stephen's face shone as an angel's and Paul finished his course with joy, most
Christians don't die that way. You and I probably won't.
We're more likely to die as Sue did in pain and exhaustion or in the arms of Morpheus.
This doesn't matter one bit to God.
Because dying in hope is better than dying with a radiant face.
It's better than dying with a big smile. It's better than dying with tender goodbyes.
And yes, it's better than dying with a hymn or a Bible verse on your lips.
Dying with hope or rather dying in hope is the best way to die.
In fact, it's the only way to die. This hope in death is not limited to heroic
Christians we all admire. This kind of death is not for the apostles or martyrs only or only for pioneer missionaries and others do, others who do outstanding work.
The fact is a hopeful death belongs to everyone who belongs to Christ.
This is because a hopeful death is not a reward for living a good life.
It's the gift of God to people whose lives have not been good. It is his gift to sinners.
Sinners who cling to our Lord Jesus Christ and pin all of their hopes in him.
I've used this word hope several times already but I haven't told you exactly what
I mean by it. Really, I don't care what I mean by it, what the Bible means by it. In its ordinary usage, hope typically means something like optimism.
I think tomorrow will be a better day than today or wishful thinking like the
Oakland A's are going to win the pennant this year. This is not how the word hope is used in the
New Testament. There in the New Testament, hope means expectation and not a silly groundless expectation but a certain expectation.
God does not tell us in his gospel to cross our fingers and hope for the best.
He tells us that our hope is real and solid, that it is infallible.
It's a hope that doesn't fail. It's a hope that never fails.
It's a hope that cannot fail. Like the Christian's inheritance, our hope is incorruptible, undefiled, that fades not away, reserved in heaven for us.
This, this kind of hope is the hope in which
Sue died and her hope will not ever be put to shame.
One's hope of course is no better than what it's attached to.
Men who place all of their hope in money are sure to be disappointed by it even or especially if they get the money they've always hoped for.
I once heard a very wealthy man say I got to the top of the greasy pole and there was nothing there.
His hope was put to shame. The money that he thought would guarantee happiness and contentment and security failed in all of the above.
His hope was put to shame. That was a disappointed man.
For the object of Sue's hope was not money or some other worldly good.
Her hope was fixed on the promises of God, his many promises that Peter calls exceedingly great and precious.
But all of these exceedingly great and precious promises can be reduced to one word, resurrection.
That's what the apostle means when he speaks of our blessed hope. He doesn't mean we're going to live long and prosperous lives.
He doesn't even mean when we die we're going to go be with Jesus. What he means is that we'll be raised from the dead.
It's not dying and going to Jesus as wonderful as that is. Theologians call that dying and going to heaven the intermediate state, a place between two points.
The believer's hope is not in the intermediate state. The believer's hope is in the eternal state, the state of the resurrection.
Our hope is not to be disembodied floating around on clouds forever.
It is the resurrection of the body. A body then to be invested with such glory and honor and immortality that if we saw such a body now we'd be tempted to worship it as a god.
In short, the believer's hope is to be conformed to the image of the resurrected and ascended
Christ. Alongside that hope, which is
Sue's hope, every other version of life after death is seen for the weak and pale and anemic thing it is.
This is why the first song our sister will sing in the resurrection won't be, and can it be?
It'll be, oh death, where is your sting? Oh grave, where is your victory?
That's the song of the resurrection. That's the song to which we'll rise.
You know, this hope is a lot easier to preach than it is to believe.
And why wouldn't it be? Everyday experience teaches us that when people die, they stay dead.
Oh, they're alive in our memories, maybe. We might dream about them sometimes.
But when people die, they stay dead. And this is true of everyone
I've ever known except for Jesus. He died on the cross, a real human death.
And when he died, he was as dead as any other dead person, as dead as the two thieves between whom he was crucified.
No, I know the Roman soldiers were not medical examiners, not pathologists, but they sure knew a dead man when they saw one.
And just to make sure that he was dead, one of them stuck a spear in his side and saw the blood and water gush out.
Everyone knew that Jesus was dead. From the soldiers who crucified him, to the governor who gave them the orders, to the spectators who showed up either to pity him or ridicule him, to his disciples.
No one, I mean literally not one person in the world thought otherwise.
Not even his own mother or his dearest friend John thought that he was really alive or would come back to life anytime soon.
Their thinking didn't waver. It didn't waver in the least for three days and three nights.
But then these people and about 500 more saw him. They talked to him.
They touched him. Their hands handled them. Some of them even had the pleasure of a joint breakfast with him.
The formerly dead man was now alive. And the life he then had was not at all like the life he had before.
His new life was not a life marked by suffering and humiliation and under the shadow of death.
Jesus, in other words, did not die. I'm sorry, did not rise from the dead in the same way that Lazarus did.
He rose to a different kind of life. He rose to the indestructible and infinitely happy life of the resurrection.
This is what Psalm 16 is about. His flesh rested in hope.
What hope? The hope that he would not see corruption. That he would show, that he would be shown the path of life and that he'd soon be back body and soul in the presence of his father.
Our belief in the resurrection is not based on tradition. I believe it because I'm a
Christian and all Christians believe it. It's certainly not based on superstition.
I want it to be true and so it must be true. Or even some peculiar interpretation of the
Bible. In fact, our belief in the resurrection is based on fact.
The fact that Jesus, our Savior, who used to be dead is now alive and is alive forevermore.
And more than is he just alive, but in his gospel, he promises the same life to all who would believe in him.
And this is the hope that Sue had in this world.
And what's better, it's the same hope she now has in the other world.
And this hope, her hope, her certain expectation will be answered in ways no one can imagine.
If William Shakespeare and Dante appeared here, with all of their linguistic genius, they would stand here open mouth, not knowing how to describe the beauty, the majesty, the honor, and the immortality of Sue Sheldon and all who believe in the
Lord Jesus. But whether describing it is turned over to bumbling preachers like myself or great poets or even inspired prophets, no one can describe how wonderful this is.
It makes no difference at all who tries to describe it. No one really gets any closer than anyone else.
But nonetheless, the fact that I cannot describe it adequately, the
Apostle Paul can't describe it adequately, it's still true.
And it's what Sue is now awaiting and belongs to all who love
Christ appearing. This is why now touching on that passage
I read in First Thessalonians, this is why like others, we sorrow.
Death is not a good thing. Death is not a friend. Death is not a lover.
Death is not a part of life. Death is a terrible thing.
And Sue's death is a terrible loss. A loss to her husband, loss to her son, a loss to her family, to her church, to her friends, and to her neighbors.
Some silly person said, no one is irreplaceable. Nonsense. Everyone is irreplaceable.
And no one more than the dear lady and sister we remember today.
But if we, like others, sorrow at her death, we do not sorrow in the same way as those who have no hope.
Because we do have hope. Sue has hope. And it's a hope that can no more be taken away from us than Jesus Christ can be taken away from us.
Therefore, let's give ear to the words of the apostle and comfort one another with these things.
Amen. Thank you. Please turn the hymnal to hymn number 580.
It is well. When you have that, please stand. Hymn number 580. Me to say it is well, it is well with my soul.
It is well with my soul.
It is well, it is well with my soul.
Though Satan should buffet, though trial should come,
Death is blest assurance control.
That Christ has regarded my helpless estate
And has shed his own blood for my soul.
It is well with my soul.
It is well, it is well with my soul.
My sin, O the bliss of this glorious fall,
My sin not in part, but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more.
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul.
It is well with my soul.
It is well, it is well with my soul.
O Lord, haste the day when the face shall be sighed,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll,
The trump shall resound, and the
Lord shall descend, Even so, it is well with my soul.
It is well with my soul.
It is well, it is well with my soul.
And I saw a new heaven and a new earth, For the first heaven and the first earth had passed away,
And the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, Coming down out of heaven from God, Prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man.
He will dwell with them, and they will be his people. And God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes,
And death shall be no more. Neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain any more,
For the former things have passed away. And he who was seated on the throne said, Behold, I am making all things new.
May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Amen. Afterward, there's a reception soon afterward, if not immediately.
We'd be pleased if you would join us for that. Excuse me, ladies and gentlemen.
Can I have your attention for a moment? So there's going to be food served outside.
I'm told that there are three different tables for different kinds of food. If you'd go to one of those and serve yourselves, please.
Excuse me, as we go to eat, I'm going to go ahead and give thanks for us.
And you can go out and eat as you're able. Excuse me, if we could have quiet for just a moment.
Thank you. Please bow your heads with me. Heavenly Father, we thank you for the life of our friend,
Miss Sue. We thank you, Father, for all the lives she has touched, and all the grace that's been evident in her life over so many years.
We pray, Father, that as we leave this place, we would reflect upon your gifts to her and our position before you, that we would love and follow the same
Lord that she loved and followed for so many years. We thank you for providing for our bodies, the food that has come.
We thank you, Father, that in you is the bread of life. And as this food fills our bodies, we would reflect on the one who can feed and nourish our souls.
We thank you again and bless you in Jesus' name. Amen. Amen. Amen.