A week ago, my mother-in-law, Katherine Hubner went home to be with her God and Savior. Some people seem old even in their 40s - while others, like Mom are young even at age 82.
Just three years ago, she was boogie-boarding in the Outer Banks. She enjoyed playing Nintendo with my boys. As recently as last year, she was considering getting roller skates.
Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints.
Mom was the gentlest of souls. I don’t believe I’ve ever met a gentler, kinder person in my life. You really get to know a person when we live under the same roof…having lived in the same house with Mom for the past four years, I don’t think I’ve ever heard her utter a cross word.
Do not let your adorning be external--the braiding of hair, the wearing of gold, or the putting on of clothing--but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God's sight is very precious.
(1 Peter 3:3-4)
Mom was also one of the most grateful persons I know. Perhaps because she was an only child, she was very thankful for her family. She loved her children and grandchildren. She was also so grateful for her friends, seeing each friend as a gift from God. She loved her church. She said to me more than once - “Being part of Sovereign Grace Church is the best thing that has ever happened to me”. That’s the grace of God when someone who is in her eighties would feel so much part of a relatively young church. She died like she lived...even in her last weeks, she was continually thanking friends for visiting and being grateful for every card she received.
You are my God, and I will give thanks to you; you are my God; I will extol you. Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!
That Mom came to know her Savior at age 69 is a wonderful story of God's grace. She was invited to a bible study where and she responded to the gospel call with faith and repentance. Hers was a simple faith but God used her in very profound ways. She was kind, greeting everyone with a warm hug. If you shared a need with her, you can be assured that she would be praying for you, carrying you in her heart. Many in the church have been receipients of birthday cards, get well cards or encouragement notes from her.
She loved serving her Savior. As part of the Alpha Outreach team, she would joyfully spend her Tuesday nights serving meals to visitors . And, a couple of months before her passing, she was training to serve in the church bookstore. As my friend Eric Jensen said at her burial - she blossomed in her 80s...she was not coasting to the end, she was cresting.
Do you not know that in a race all the runners compete, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it.
(1 Cor 9:24)
If it’s possible to run the race of faith, breaking the tape and crossing the finish line at full speed - Mom did it. She left all of us an example of what it means to live every day for God. Our family will miss her greatly but we thank God for her life. We know we will see her again.
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing.
(2 Tim 4:7-8)