Over the weekend the church lost one of its saints. Her illness came sudden and progressed fast. Just three short months and she was gone.
I had the privilege of knowing her and serving with her. So I thought I would pay tribute to her here. I don’t know all the logistics of her entire life, all I know is the beautiful lady I got to work with for a few years.
Lorraine is her name and I first met her when she came up to my reception desk at my church. I had been working there for years and she was starting her volunteer ministry with us after just retiring. She was already helping out a woman I worked with, but had expressed interest in volunteering for me with whatever I might need. I gladly took her contact info, as I was always in need of a helping hand here and there.
That would begin a wonderful working experience for us. Boy, did she ever help me out! There was no such thing as being non-committal to her. She was always on time, always ready and never a grump about it (which you would think would be common, but sadly it is not). In fact her commitment was so strong that she would call me in May to arrange her summer holidays around mine, so that she could cover me for my holidays! Ummm, yeah…she was incredible!
Pretty soon she was volunteering in all sorts of area’s in the church, predominately the kitchen. And why? Because she was retired, but did not want to stop serving.
Lorraine had a way about her that was admirable for so many reasons. I never once saw her frazzled, frustrated, tired or upset. For that matter I never saw her be anything but cool as a cucumber and happy to be serving the Lord. No matter what the circumstances (and sometimes the circumstances were not so ideal), she had a calm smile on her face.
She humbly embodied these words, “Strength and dignity are her clothing and she laughs at the time to come. She opens her mouth with wisdom and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.” (Proverbs 31:25-26)
I long to resemble her in these ways.
When I heard she had been diagnosed with cancer I didn’t really bat an eye (regrettably), because I just assumed she would be okay. She had to be okay.
But then I was told that her husband and her decided they would not do chemo and to be honest I was a little disappointed in them. I thought you’re not even gonna try?, but it wasn’t my decision to make. And a few weeks later I got news of why they made this decision. Whether she was healed or she died, she wanted God to get the glory, not the doctors. And even though this theology can be sticky I can’t fault her heart. She did not fear death. And she lived to give God glory. That was evident both in how she lived and how she died.
The Lord was all she needed. And now she is with Him.
I am so thankful to God to have known such a woman as Lorraine. I am also thankful that I will see her again. I mourn her loss, as it is such a giant one. But I rejoice in knowing where she is and who she is with.
“Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.” ~ Psalm 116:15