Aunt Bertha Mae weighed in at a petite 300 lbs and everyone adored her.
Of course she was a good cook. Her legendary coconut cake literally melted in your mouth.
The best thing about Aunt Bertha Mae was her love for, and knowledge about Jesus.
She was a strong Christian who walked with God every day.
She taught Kathy how to study the Bible, how to study the Concordance and how to select good resources and helpful books.
She had a great library of Christian biographies, autobiographies, humor books, and Devotionals.
She had a thousand stories and testimonies of how Jesus had cared for her, and kept her through the trials and tribulations of life, from the time she was a child to her senior days.
Every chance Kathy got she paid Aunt Bertha Mae a visit so that she could just receive her vast store of wisdom.
Aunt Bertha Mae had some serious health problems. She always talked about going on a diet, but that never happened.
Well, actually she did go on diets, but since she made a good living selling her coconut cakes it was hard not to sample them.
Usually when someone paid her to bake a coconut cake she’d bake two just in case the first one didn’t look right, and then the other one was left for her!
When Kathy heard the news that Aunt Bertha Mae had died, she was so distraught she had to leave her job and come home early.
She could not concentrate, could not keep her emotions under control.
Her husband’s family did not understand why she was so distraught; after all she was his aunt, not hers!
At the funeral Kathy wailed more than anyone in the immediate family.
It was a great loss of a wonderful friendship. It was a teacher learner friendship and a mentor-mentee friendship.
No one knew the extent of her grief about Aunt Bertha Mae, because she did not tell anyone, but Jesus knew.
The mourning would not go away! Every day Kathy would silently ask the Lord over and over, “Where is Aunt Bertha Mae?,” “Where is Aunt Bertha Mae?”
She knew she was at rest in heaven with Him, but her whining went on and on for months.
After about a year, she believe the Lord decided to show her in a way that she would never forget. A way that would bring closure to her grief. He is wonderful that way.
She dreamed she was standing in front of a beautiful cottage. It was shiny white with a white picket fence around it. Lovely flowers and plants in beautiful pots were in the yard on the little porch.
The door opened and Kathy walked in. The front room was beautiful with memento’s and collections-photographs, diaries, Bibles, and many treasured books.
She heard a sound from the other room and knew someone was there, but she was so engrossed in looking at the gold shiny picture frames, pretty keepsakes and personal treasurers, that she ignored the sound.
Finally she turned and walked into the next room which was a bedroom, and there was Aunt Bertha Mae!
She was sleeping in a pretty white canopy bed with white coverlets and pink satin ribbons and bows. It was a funny sight because she was in such a deep deep sleepand snoring so loud and hard that the covers were fluttering!
“I told you she was resting.”
Kathy wanted so badly to talk to her and tried to shake her awake but realized that nothing-nothing was ever going to wake Aunt Bertha Mae until God said so.
She realized that the snoring Aunt Bertha Mae was doing was an eternity snore!
So she turned and walked out of the pretty cottage, and went on with her life.
Where are our loved ones who have gone on before us? They are all with God.
Whether they are in a pretty cottage snoring like Aunt Bertha Mae or somewhere else in heaven, only God knows.
The most important thing is they are with God.
2 Corinthians 5:7-17
7(For we walk by faith, not by sight:)
8 We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.
9 Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him.
10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.
11 Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences.
12 For we commend not ourselves again unto you, but give you occasion to glory on our behalf, that ye may have somewhat to answer them which glory in appearance, and not in heart.
13 For whether we be beside ourselves, it is to God: or whether we be sober, it is for your cause.
14 For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead:
15 And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again.
16 Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more.
17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.