Monday, October 11, 2010

Frances With Jesus

Just a week ago my dear Frances was carried into the presence of the Lord. She was 10 days in the hospital then another 9 days in a care facility. She realized that very soon the Lord Jesus would be coming to take her and requested that we take her home. She wanted to leave for heaven from her own home. Her sister, Nancy, came to help me in the home. She was like an angel from heaven for me. I had the wonderful privilege of caring for Frances for one week at home. It was beautiful. When I washed her feet or hands or spooned applesauce into her mouth she always said, "Thank you so much!" I think she told me that she loved me over 100 times. She was fully aware that only a few days or hours were left. She never expressed any fear. We hugged tightly, prayed together and wept together. Sunday afternoon she asked me to sing something to her. I called together all the family that were in the house, her sister, Nancy, our sons Mike and Tim, Tim's wife Cheryl and the grandkids. We all gathered around her bedside and sang all the hymns that came to mind and prayed together. We wept rivers while we sang. God was really close! She had her eyes closed most of the time and could barely speak. Hours later after all had gone she asked me, "Is today the day I am going to go?" I thought she was dreaming about someone coming to take her for a ride. I asked her, "Where are they going to take you?" Without opening her eyes she replied, "To heaven!" The tone of her voice made me believe that she was anxiously awaiting that moment. Monday night she was having difficulty breathing and her attempts to speak could not be understood. After midnight I called for Nancy to join me. She stood beside her bed as I lay beside her holding her hand. We sang a while and prayed. Heaven seemed so close! She was trying to speak again. Nancy and I leaned over her to try to understand. It was a final, "I love you!" Moments later I released her hand for only a brief time and her spirit left her. Someone else had come to take her hand to usher her into the glorious presence of her beloved Jesus!

There will be a viewing at Salas Brothers Funeral Chapel, 419 Scenic Dr., Modesto, Tuesday, October 12 from 4 PM to 8 PM. The funeral service will be at Bethel Church, 2361 Scenic Dr., Modesto, Wednesday October 13 at 10 AM followed by a reception. The burial will be Thursday, October 14, 10 AM at Cherokee Memorial Park in Lodi (Harney exit).

Thank you so much for your many expressions of love and care,

Ralph Hiatt