Monday, June 06, 2011

6th June

What can I say about today? The greatest challenge of my life… the funeral of my wife, my best friend, my one true soul-mate, my lover, the mother of my children and such a beautiful person. It was a perfect day, everything I could have asked for worked brilliantly and I have to say that I am totally overwhelmed with the kindness of so many joining with us, I must have been hugged by a hundred people after the service of thanksgiving… and there were more than few handshakes as well! The remarks made about Jane and the kindness shown to myself and my family have left me a little shaky. It’s all a bit much. And there have been so many little stories shared of how Jane impacted lives in very special ways that I didn’t know about. She was truly loved and respected for who she was by so many. I sort of keep thinking that she would have been amazed if she had known even the smallest part of the way others see her. I reckon she’s got a good idea by now as she converses with the Lord in heaven, and I wonder if going red with embarrassment is possible as an available option in paradise… I know she would have in this life.

I prepared a couple of slightly different tributes to Jane for each of the two meetings and that was quite a tough call to make. Standing in front of assembled fellow mourners and reading whilst fighting back the tears when our pastor would willingly have read for me… but I did it and it felt good honouring the life of my lovely Jane in a way that no one else could. Most days over many years I would spend time with Jane using my guitar to sing worship songs and I decided to do exactly that with a couple of songs as part of my tribute. I even bravely ventured into the blues genre for a version of Amazing Grace that Jane and I enjoyed quite recently and I’m so glad I did as a very personal tribute to Jane’s love of worshipping God and her enjoyment of blues music. A couple of my daughters sang live the song written for Jane last year and that was precious – you can find it on my blog of 27th May. Years ago we used to sing and play a lot as a family and we could just about put together a small band, it was so special hearing my girls sing together again. One more time for their lovely mum.

Our church is so wonderfully supportive, providing every facility and staff to make this most difficult of days so very easy. They did everything we asked willingly in such a friendly serving way with catering staff working on their day off and others travelling late to a church conference in North Wales, they really put themselves out and I am so grateful. It’s great not having to consider finding ushers, a PA guy and a musician to make a meeting happen when it’s all done for you by people you already know. It was all so personal and our pastor was quite perfect in all he said and did and I am so grateful for the privilege of belonging to such a church.

Psalm 7:17 ‘I will sing praise to the name of the Lord Most High.’ (NLT)

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