Today’s Passage – Numbers 8 – 10
My apologies if I get too graphic in my descriptions. I began writing this fifth part on Monday the 13th. As I sit here looking at Melissa, her fingers showing the almost 30 year battle she had with arthritis. Her body riddled with cancer. I am reminded of my mom. My mom went home to be with the Lord either at the end of October, or the beginning of November 1999. My mom had bone cancer. It was very hard on me being in Texas at the time. I wanted to be back in NJ, but I couldn’t. I managed to get home early October to see her. But seeing Melissa in the same condition as my mom, that’s been rough. Until this morning. God gave me a thought about what picture He was painting here.
It’s a picture of love.
Those of you with children, you can probably relate better to this than a single person. You know how our children do bone-head things, refuse to take direction, and are generally disobedient – you know, normal. Well, looking at Melissa, as tears start to flow, I realize just how much I will miss her, though only for a season. God put this thought in my head, that as much as I love her, He loves her more. This is just a sample of His love. All the things our children did, the anger that we had at their foolish acts, mean nothing: it’s the way God looks at His children. I got to see that: to experience it with the love I had for Melissa. We have all been disobedient at one time or another, but God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Our kids are still our kids no matter what they do or have done. I kind of have an idea of how God the Father felt watching His only begotten Son die on the cross. There was nothing He could do: the work started would be completed so that one day we could have a home in heaven. God’s love is a perfect, unconditional love.
Then came Wednesday night. Melissa’s breathing was very hard and labored. I could picture Jesus hanging on that Roman cross, lifting Himself up to breath, then His body collapsing slamming his back into that old rugged cross. I could hear Mary crying in the background, “My baby! My baby! Why is this happening?”
I can see the disciples watching in shock as the life of their Messiah comes to a close. They cry out to God for mercy: for God to end it soon. Jesus speaks from the cross, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”
At 1:10am, Melissa gathers enough breath to say a few last words. Just a few more breaths after that, and she was safely in the arms of Jesus. The Lord Jesus Christ went through so much agony to be able to receive Melissa back to her real home. And every other believer too. Jesus shed His precious blood on the cross to pay for our sins. And He made it so simple for us to be with Him someday. All you need do is know that you are a sinner, and as a sinner you cannot save yourself. You need a Saviour. Jesus is the only one who ever fulfilled all the prophecies of Messiah. And Jesus said, “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”
And He laid down His life for you. If you haven’t, you need to call upon the name of the Lord to save you. Tell Him in your own words that you are a sinner, and ask Him to come into your heart to forgive your sins, and to save you. And He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
So what were Melissa’s final words? She said what Jesus said in deed on the cross. They both said, “I love you.”
I love you.
I love you.
That’s what Calvary said.
I love you.
I love you.
I love you, written in red.
Peace. (Melissa Dilley: 12/6/75 to Eternity)