Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: This Side of Paradise (not about the book) (07/14/11)
- TITLE: Last Days
By Lois Farrow
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“Call me any time,” she said to the nurse. You never knew when it would be her final breath, but Elsie’s prayer for the past few months had been the same. ‘Lord, I’m ready, please take me tonight.’
As Jenny drove away from the hospital her thoughts went back five years to the death of her daughter, Susie. This was a death she was totally unprepared for. Eight years old, full of fun and impulsive. She would never forget the horror of watching Susie race on to the road in pursuit of a runaway ball; there was no way the car could stop in time. In spite of everything, Jenny smiled as she thought of her. With the distance of time she could remember Susie without the tears that accompanied every memory in those first awful months. Now Susie was in heaven, and Jenny couldn’t help but contrast the youthful energy of Susie with the weakness and frailty of Aunt Elsie as they spent their last days this side of paradise.
Jenny thought also of another cruel death and a last conversation. While Jesus hung on the cross he could talk with the criminals crucified with him. ‘Remember me when you come into your kingdom,’ one of them cried, and Jesus could reply – ‘This day you will be with me in paradise.’ What a contrast, their last day on earth in the horror and agony of the cross, and then stepping into paradise.
As Jenny drove home she found herself giving thanks. Thank you, Jesus, for your death, she prayed. Thank you for your power and pardon and promise of paradise. Thank you that I can trust you to take care of Susie and Aunt Elsie, and when it comes to my last days, whenever that may be, I trust you for my place in paradise also.
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