A Funeral and Sanctification
Today was Gene's funeral. Many eulogies say, "______ was a good man..." (hopefully not when so-and-so was a woman), but Gene really was. Nobody could think of anything negative to say about him... even before he started downhill.
I was thinking about Gene and it led to this thought: somewhere Gene learned to be a good man. Somewhere he learned to be hard-working and dilligent. Somewhere he learned to use good language (no, I'm not talking about German). Somewhere he learned to cherish his relationship with his family and with his God.
The word sanctification doesn't get used much these days, not outside the seminary walls (and depending on what seminary you're talking about, often not within them, either), but Gene was someone who I would say was sanctified. He was set apart for God, and he knew it. He wouldn't have ever claimed that he'd arrived (though he has now!), and he'd probably have changed the subject out of embarrassment, but I think he was there. Not perfect. Just sanctified.
I could see a family resemblance in Gene that I found remarkable. Not of his parents or siblings, none of whom I ever knew. But of his Savior, who was also known for His hard working nature, for being true to His word, for His devotion to the ones He loved, and for being good at wood working. If the legacy that Gene leaves behind is one of "follow me" it's certainly a good one. While striving to follow his example, one will find him/herself following the path laid out long before Gene walked it.
Bon voyage, Gene. We'll see you on the other side.