My favorite Bible verse is Philippians 4:13 which says, "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." It is also my mom's favorite verse. It reminds me that I can do anything because Christ has my back.
In 2010 when my Papa was diagnosed with colon cancer, I was shaken to the core. I was the first grandchild and the ONLY granddaughter and Papa and I had a special relationship. Mama, Papa and I would go play BINGO together and the three generations would have a blast! We liked a lot of the same things and every moment was precious. That cancer diagnosis took us all by surprise. It came in fall of the year, and Papa was already stage 4. We prayed for more time with him, but saw him get weaker every day! Papa was a lay minister, a church deacon, choir director and very active church member up to this point. At Thanksgiving that year, Papa put on a brave face and shared in the love with his family. The doctor told us that he probably would not make it to Christmas, but thanks to the grace of God, he did. We had one last Christmas with Papa. He passed away in January of 2011, after spending about 2 weeks in the hospital. The night before he passed, I carried Kat to see him and explained that he was unconscious. She went to his bed and rubbed his white hair and told him she loved him, While Kat was squeezing his hand, Papa opened his eyes and looked at Kat. He smiled and said, "There's Pa's baby. I love you." He closed his eyes and never opened them again. He passed the next morning surrounded by his family. Grandma and I were holding his hands as he climbed that ladder to Heaven.
Losing my Papa was the hardest thing I had gone through, even harder than my divorce. The thing that kept me sane was knowing that Papa was saved and that I would see him again one day. When people asked me how I was able to deal with it so well, I always let them know that Jesus Christ gave me the strength. Without Christ, I would not have made it. HIS strength has gotten me through the deaths of my Daddy, cousin, and father in law in 2012 and my mother in law in 2013. I am thankful that God cared so much for me that He gave His Son to die for my sins. Believing in Christ, I am saved, and through Christ I can do all things!
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