Appointed to die

Dear friends

Have you ever been there when someone died?

Me, I have this weekend, yesterday to be precise.

It was my father.

He had a long life (82), but not a very happy one, and he had been struggling with diverse illnesses for many years…..

We have had a very difficult history, although the history I have had with my dad is not as difficult as the one I have with my mom, but there has always been a lot of conflict, toxicity, hurt and pain in this family, even in the generation before my parents, me, I have even had to cut them off completely in the past due to severe psychological and emotional abuse.
Only when I got saved, did I find it in my heart to forgive them and go back and allow contact once again – I had left them and they hadn’t known where I was, not even if I was still alive, for 10 years.
That was in 2015…

The years I then had left with my dad were years when we had a lot of discussions about faith – I had led him to THE LORD perhaps 2 years ago on one of the many occasions when he was in the hospital and we had long conversations over the phone and he decided to dedicate his life to Christ.
However, his walk with GOD has not been easy…. he had a lot of doubts and as big as his doubts were, as equally small was his dedication to pray and to read the bible and to spend time with GOD – he didn’t even make it to church every week, let alone other involvements in any kind of faith related activities…..
I was the only connection he had to GOD, as the rest of my family are all unbelievers.

When his health was more and more deteriorating over the past months and weeks, I called every Sunday night, but at some point, he wasn’t able to speak with me anymore (due to one of his illnesses) and my mom was there on the phone with him, which completely changed the topics and the atmosphere of the conversations.
A few weeks ago, my sister messaged me to ask when I would be planning to come next and due to all the things I have going on here, I wasn’t sure I would be able to make it before Christmas and she told me that she highly doubted that he would be able to make Christmas this year.
Last week, she messaged me on Thursday that he had been moved to the hospital for palliative care and that she believes I need to come now if I want to say goodbye.

I prayed about it and GOD told me to go, so I booked a flight for Friday.

I arrived at night, the hospital staff let me in – they even did the required COVID-19 test for me in the hospital because I would have been unable to find an open test center due to having arrived too late in the day.

When I saw him, he was already in a state which I would describe as “in transition” or “in between the 2 worlds”.

They had given him a lot of medication, against pain, against anxiety etc, but he was visibly and audibly still struggling and fighting – he sighed, he moaned, he breathed heavily, he even did hand gestures as if he was physically fighting an invisible enemy, or someone only he was able to see….. in between, he had a few clear moments, he sometimes said something, but most of the time, we were all unable to make out what he was saying……sometimes he would react to a story we told or a song we sang……
Me, I was praying a lot, reading out psalms, praying loud and silently, in tongues and in words everyone could understand – but my sister and my mom didn’t say much, they just sat there and cried and watched him…………
It was clear that there was absolutely nothing they could do.

Don’t get me wrong, I, too, cried – the entire time!!! – but I didn’t feel empty or powerless or desperate – not at all!
I felt empowered, encouraged, happy that I had made it on time to see him and to help him cross over – as an act of love, of obedience to GOD, of honoring my parents and of service to a fellow believer in CHRIST.

The nurses were so sweet and helpful, they sometimes came to look after him and after us, asking always if they could bring coffee or food or anything – can you imagine, one of them even showed me a prayer that she had brought up on her phone, it was a rosary prayer, so I told her that this is a catholic prayer and that my dad and I are protestants and that we don’t pray this prayer, but I thanked her for the thought and for her kindness.

Then at some point, when they asked me if there was anything else they could do, I had the thought that I wanted to anoint him, and I asked if they could give me some oil.
They asked what kind of oil and I said, I don’t even care, any oil, olive oil if you have, or any other oil, and in the same moment, I saw a tiny plastic cup with oil on the table, I hadn’t seen it before, and I asked what this is and they told me it is argan oil and they had used it for his sore and dry feet, and this was the moment when I was even more sure that THE LORD was in the room…….

So I anointed him and whilst I had thought before when I had prayed, that my prayers and reading of the psalms had intensified his battle sometimes, when I anointed him, I felt a great relief and a sense of victory and I saw his face relaxed and he sighed peacefully…….

However, it wasn’t over yet and his battles took many more hours and we were on watch the entire night……

I made sure that I spoke to him aloud about forgiveness, about peace, about what it is like in the kingdom, that there are no tears, no pain, no sorrows, and that he will be fine there, I reminded him that everything is dealt with here, that he can go, that he has no unfinished business and that it’s ok to be tired and to let go…….
I had spoken with him so many times about this, had given him the opportunity to confess or to share anything that he is worried or bothered about, but he had kept telling me that there is nothing – however, there was a visible, terrible fight going on and we were all wondering why it was so hard for him to let go…..

At some point, I had gone home to get some sleep, my mom had come home as well later, and my sister had stayed with him……

When we were both returning, he opened his eyes and had 3 “clear moments” when he acknowledged my mom’s and my presence and made it very clear that he is happy to see us and that he knows we are there.

My mom then went to the loo and I prayed again, read psalm 23 to him, and one of the doctors had also entered the room and had told us that he is now going very soon, and whilst I was reading the psalm and praying, he died, and when my mom came back, he was gone………

But what I noticed in his very last moments was peace.

There was no more struggle, no more hand gestures of fighting, no more moaning or noises of indicating pain or struggles……… there were some last deep breaths, a slight smile on his face, his eyes were gazing into the distance and then he stopped breathing….. his very last moments were peaceful.

And I know for sure that this is because he was going home to be with THE FATHER.

Me, I was relieved, almost happy when he had left and when his struggle was over.

A long, very difficult, painful, exhausting and humiliating process (I don’t want to go into the gory details here) had ended.

He was finally able to enter his rest.

However, my sister and my mom were then only really starting to cry, whilst I felt as if I could almost stop crying now.

And I realized that this is what death must be like for unbelievers, who have no idea what comes after, where they will be going and who now are unable to believe that this person’s soul truly rests in peace – as they say.

They both acknowledged that it must be a lot easier for “us”(Christians) to die as we believe we are going home – and my dad had told us all that he isn’t afraid of death, only of the dying process – and from what I have seen, it was indeed a difficult, challenging and obviously horrifying transitional period for him before he had his relief….
And they also recognized that he died peacefully in the end.

I even used the situation for a little evangelizing motivational speech, but to no avail – they didn’t interrupt me, but also didn’t respond either – as previously, but I did it for GOD anyway, and I thought perhaps in the very presence of death and the prospect of not going to heaven, they might be able to make the choice, but I was unable to get through to them, GOD will need to do that if it is HIS will for them to be saved…… for me, it was even very hard to mention salvation in that moment, because they were already looking at me in a certain way, even whilst I had been praying…..but I decided to obey GOD and honor HIM and also show them that I have help and comfort and consolation…..

But what this showed me personally is how 100% real heaven and hell are.

There was a visible fight over my dad’s soul going on.

There were dark forces trying to claim him.

And he was literally defending himself and perhaps this was even the judgement process or some sort of pre-judgment – his noises sometimes sounded like arguing, like denying, like apologizing, at times also like appreciative, happy noises, but a lot of it looked horrible – and without knowing everything about my dad’s life, I do know he has done some horrible stuff – as we all have!!

But in the end, GOD accepted him.

Or perhaps he was even finally able to claim his promise of eternal life and had managed to let go of his doubts.

His end was peaceful.

And his eternity will be.

Me, I am emotionally and physically drained and a bit “haunted” by the scenes we saw, it wasn’t pleasant to see and hear this literal struggle with death – but I am also at peace.

Other than my sister and my mom, who mainly have grief and loss in their hearts – a little peace, yes, because he had been so ill and had been struggling for so long, but for them, there is nothing after this life, so all they can see is that he has now lost his life and that reminds them that they, too, will loose their lives one day and that they need to “get” / “achieve” and accomplish this or that in order to be fulfilled, happy or whatever they are after………….

Me, I don’t need anything.

Yes, there are many things that I don’t have and that I even feel are lacking in my life, many things I am struggling with, many things I am even tormented by…………. at the moment, I don’t even have a job after 30/11 and if I wasn’t with GOD, I would be truly, truly worried……….

But I have something else: I have the PEACE of Christ.

For me, the greatest gift of salvation, together with THE TRUTH.
Obviously, everybody loves to feel GOD’s love and so do I.
But HIS PEACE and HIS TRUTH are even more precious to me than HIS love – without diminishing it, it is indeed the greatest love and the only unconditional and never-ending love anyone could have, but for me personally, the peace and the truth are even above it.

And regardless of how your personal hierarchy of the 3 eternal, most awesome and supernatural gifts of GOD which come with salvation is, one thing is certain:

Unbelievers have none of them.
I have asked them both, my mom and my sister, what they believe where they are going and they both said, nowhere, they both said that they believe there is absolutely nothing after this life – and when I asked them what the meaning of life is for them, they were both talking about themselves, about what they want from life, about wanting to do good, about wanting to be happy……………. and they were not very clear – at least not in my perception.
It wasn’t only that I didn’t agree with them, I also had the impression that they themselves aren’t 100% sure if they got it right.

From seeing my father die and watching his transition, I not only know that heaven and hell are real, but also everything else GOD says.

Obviously, I had believed in GOD before.

But this experience, as horrible as it was, made me see HIS power and HIS glory and convinced me even more that HE is real and everything else that’s in the bible and everything I have learned over the years.

Last, but not least, I felt GOD’s presence there in the room and I also received instructions – the part with the oil for instance – or when I read Psalm 23, my sister any my mom said the pastor who had been there earlier in the day had also read the same psalm to him.
I had never thought of reading this psalm to someone who is dying, but of course, when you do think about it, it makes perfect sense, so whilst I was going through my first experience of walking alongside someone who is dying, THE LORD even taught me how to do it, how to pray, what to say, I could see the soothing effect of what I did and so could my sister and my mom, although they are unbelievers….

This experience strengthened my faith, it increased my knowledge, it gave me peace, it taught me so many aspects of dying and eternal life, I can’t even properly describe how significant this was – I can only quote a part of a prayer from one of my brothers today when I told them that my dad had died yesterday, and he had prayed that this experience would make me “even bigger with GOD” – it definitely has done exactly that.

I had a conversation with GOD immediately afterwards about fatherhood and safety and protection.
I told GOD that I thanked him for my earthly father, who hadn’t always been a good father, but he had been the only one of my parents who at least sometimes had helped me out financially, had been supportive and encouraging and appreciative – not so my mom, but that’s another story for another day – and I said to GOD whereas I had some little father love coming from my earthly father, now, I have even more so the need for HIM to step in as MY FATHER, and also today after the prayers, another brother gave me a word and said that GOD will now be a FATHER to me like never before – this was exactly what I had asked GOD to take over now, and this word was a confirmation that this is what HE will do now.

The support and prayers coming for me have been amazing and I feel cared for, in fact I am surprised how many people take the time to express their condolences and to check in with me….

GOD is good.

And without HIM, we have nothing.

Only GOD can give us peace.

In life, and also when we are dying – during the process and most definitely afterwards.

There is really no good reason to live or die without HIM.

In case you haven’t done so already, please consider giving your life to JESUS today.
Tomorrow could be too late.

GOD bless you and keep you and shine HIS face upon you, and bring you PEACE.

8 thoughts on “Appointed to die

  1. Wow! Eva well done for supporting your dad to transit peacefully. Yes God will definitely be a dad to you more now! He will never leave you stranded! GOD IS FAITHFUL..
    I pray the strength of God for you in this trying times.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much my dear sister ๐Ÿ’•
      For reading, for your care and support, for the word you gave me and for your prayers.
      It means SO much to me and it helps me more than you will ever know!!!
      GOD bless you ๐Ÿ’•๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป

      Like

  2. So sorry for your ordeal, but the strength God gave you in those moments to be a light for you Dad and family is a testimony to all, especially to your own heart. What a blessing that you were able to reconcile enough with your Dad to lead him into reconciliation with The Father. Now you get to look forward to a heavenly eternity of reconciliation with an earthly father who is now the perfected person he was created to be, as we all will be on that glorious day of our own homecomings. Thank you for sharing such a personal and powerful experience. Indeed, we โ€œovercome by the blood of The Lamb and the word of our testimony.โ€

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for reading through, for โ€žgetting it allโ€œ and for pointing out even more glorious and victorious aspects of this, Dan!
      I am blessed to have godly people like you in my life who understand GODโ€˜s plan and HIS ways of working in me and through me. That wasnโ€™t always the case and thatโ€™s also a testimony in itself!!
      Good to be connected, my dear brother, GOD bless you ๐Ÿ’•๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป

      Liked by 1 person

  3. My whole family is very toxic as well. Imagine being a live in care giver for a mother from Hell. That is good though as the suffering she has caused takes me ever closer into Jesus’ loving arms.

    Glad your dads ending was peaceful.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you my dear brother, I know you understand and your comment means a lot!๐Ÿ˜Š
      Iโ€˜ve said it before, you are much stronger than I am and I could never do what you do!
      Even doing this for my dad was hard, but I did it for GOD and itโ€™s true what you say: these horrible experiences bring us closer to HIM and I know for a fact that HE will remember and reward our labour of love for HIM, both yours and mine.
      GOD bless you my dear brother ๐Ÿ’•๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป

      Like

  4. I’m glad you were there for your dad Eva. My dad struggled physically the same way as he died, very hard but yet he had smiles as he knew Jesus much of his life. The spiritual battle is as real through life as it is art the end of life. I for one want to make sure my last hours are in victory with Jesus by winning those battles of doubt way ahead of time (like now).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Me too Gary!
      I would even love to leave this life without this long, agonising battle- if possible and if it is GODโ€˜s will for me.
      Thank you for reading and commenting Gary, GOD bless you ๐Ÿ’•๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป

      Liked by 1 person

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