"Jared soon made the simple pine box that was large enough for two bodies that were wasted and thin; then he turned to the stone Eben had found for him. Working carefully with a sharp-pointed tool, he inscribed the letters on the stone. When he had finished, he drew the wondering boy to him.
'Have you learned to read yet?' Jared asked.
The boy inclined his head. 'Thankful taught me last winter.'
'Then read these words.'
The boy bent forward and read slowly.
'THANKFUL AND MARY AUSTIN
How friendly seems the vast unknown
Since they have entered there.'
Eben looked up quickly at Jared. A gleam, like the light from a small candle, was in his face, 'Is that true, Jared?'
Jared nodded. 'Even as little girls, they loved God with all their hearts-I remember it well. They've just gone ahead of us to Heaven, to be there to greet us.'"
This passage just brought me to tears and was one of those times I wished I was reading privately instead of to my children. At the same time, this is such a deep truth that I wish to pass to these same children. I agree so strongly. I have been taught my whole life that Heaven is a place beyond wonderful and I have both believed it and relied upon it. But Heaven became a friendlier place when my grammy entered and is friendlier still since my dad has gone before me. Year by year, more and more of those I know and love go before me. I look forward to that reunion! More than that of course, I want to see my Jesus. But how sweet to know how many friends and family will be gathered there as well!
"Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep with him." 1 Thess. 4:13-14