Such a lovely room

Such a lovely room

Friday, February 24, 2023

Shari Breyfogle

Burial of the Dead
February 23, 2023
Sharon Breyfogle
Isaiah 61:1-3
Revelation 7:9-17
John 14:1-6

In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Jesus said, “Do not let your hearts be troubled.”  It’s hard for us to do that today.  We gather here for the very reason that our hearts are troubled.  We cannot help it; it is the way we are.  When we don’t know where to turn, in our grief, and in our sorrow, our hearts are troubled.  And so we come together, for strength and solace, for healing and help, because our hearts are troubled.

But Jesus also says, “In my Father's house there are many dwelling places. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?”  And this is important.  Because as a baptized child of God, Jesus has prepared a place for Sharon.  If it were not so, Jesus would have said, “I go and prepare a place for you . . . except not for her.”  There are many rooms in God’s house, and one of them has Shari’s name on it. 

We know that Jesus has prepared a place for Shari.  And we also know the way to that place . . . though we might not know that we know it.  In the reading we just heard, Jesus says, he is going to prepare a place for his disciples, and tells them “You know the way to the place where I am going."  And the disciples look at each other—probably with a very worried look—because they do not know what Jesus is talking about.  They don’t even know where he is going; how can they possibly know the way?

But Thomas speaks up.  The one we sometimes wrongly call Doubting Thomas, in fact.  He says, "Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?”  It’s a good question.  And one that we all might ask today.  Jesus has prepared a place for Sharon, and Jesus tells us that we will see her again, because we know the way.  But, like the disciples, we don’t even know where Sharon is going.  How can we know the way?”

Sharon is missed because there is no one to fill her place.  Nor should there be.  We miss Shari, and we mourn with Ed and the family because she is missing from our lives.

But . . . she is not missing.  She has not gone missing, though she is missed.  We don’t know exactly where she has gone, but we do know the way to where she is.  Because Jesus answers our troubled hearts today the same way he answered Thomas that day: "I am the way, and the truth, and the life.”  Jesus is the Way.  The Way to where Sharon is going.  The Way to where you and I are going.  Though we grieve, and though we mourn, and though we dearly miss our beloved Shari, I remind you of the words of Jesus:  do not let your hearts be troubled.  We know the Way.  

May God give us the faith to trust in the promises of Jesus, for Sharon, and for ourselves.

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