On Sunday, July 28th, 2019 my grandfather, Bobbie Randolph Dameron passed away at 90 years of age.
This past Friday, at his memorial service, the Lord gave me a word to share about his eternity.
Given the events over the last few days, as we continue to see how in an instant life can end, I wanted to share this with you that you may see that this life is not the end— that you will have a vision of eternity.
This is in honor of my grandfather who I called “Pa.”
We have been celebrating my grandfather’s life— his accomplishments and military service; all of which were apart of his life in time— his temporary life.
Now, I want to speak about his life in eternity— his forever life, so that we can celebrate and we can rejoice in that as well.
Many years ago, I heard it said that “a funeral is a time to close the eyes of the dead and to open the eyes of the living,”
I like that. That’s a wise statement. I believe that If my grandfather were able to stand before you here today he would want to open your eyes to where he is now— he would want to give you a vision of eternity.
Now, we see his casket and many of us see the end, and yes – it does signify the end of his life in time, but it also signifies the beginning of his life in eternity. My grandfather would want to open your eyes to this truth: You don’t only live once- you live twice – once in time, which ends, and once in eternity, which never ends. He would want you to see that this is not his end – this is his beginning! He has only just begun to live!
He would want you to rejoice in the fact that he is alive! In fact, he is more alive than any of us sitting here right now!
Next, I believe he would want to open our eyes to the brevity of life – that your life in time; in these bodies is short. Life is short!
Now, he lived 90 years, 5 months, and 3 1/2 days and that seems like a long time, but if he were here he would say that it went by like that! —Like the blink of an eye.
God tells us in his word that our lives, YOUR life specifically is like a vapor- that you are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes away. One preacher has said that it’s “like steam the that comes off a kettle and you try to grab a handful of it and it’s gone.” The Psalmist writes: “ LORD, remind me how brief my time on earth will be. Remind me that my days are numbered— how fleeting my life is. You have made my life no longer than the width of my hand. My entire lifetime is just a moment to you; at best, each of us is but a breath.”
My grandfather would want you to be conscious of that.
Then, In light of that truth, I believe He would say, “Don’t waste your life! Don’t waste what little time you have focused on the wrong things: don’t seek fulfillment in the things of this world which is temporary, but while it is today, Seek first the kingdom of God!”
Someone has said, ”He who provides for this life but takes no care for eternity is wise for a moment but a fool forever.” I believe my grandfather would tell you today, “Don’t be a fool! Build your life on Jesus Christ; invest what little time you have in the kingdom of God.”
Now, I have here with me an investment made by my grandfather, and my grandmother Frances.
This is a children’s bible which Frances bought for me when I was five years old before she went to be with Jesus. My grandfather presented this to me after she passed and I have always had it with me. However— for 30 years of my life, I never read it. But I believe that my grandfather would tell you this: An Investment in God’s Kingdom requires patience and faith.
You see, God’s word says: “One plants the seed, one waters it, but God has been making it grow” and when I was 35 years old, God began to make that seed grow.
God opened my eyes to eternity; He showed me that I was a sinner in need of a savior, a protocol son— that I had declared my independence from His commands and had turned away from His love; that I was headed down the wrong road that leads to eternal death— but then He said, “Even though you have turned away from me, I still love you! Turn to me and live!”
God broke my heart that day— and I cried out “I have sinned against you, Lord! What must I do- what do you want me to do Lord!”
He said: “Go take out that investment that your grandmother and your grandfather made— go and read it! I’m going to teach you who I am— who my Son is; Im going to teach you my ways.”
Then my grandfather and my grandmother Joan made another investment with another Bible, and over the last 11 years, God has taught me, He has broken me, humbled me, and strengthened me in his word— All because he used an investment made by my Pa, my Ma, and my Grandmother Joan in the kingdom of God.
Now listen! Open your eyes to the truth! The entire message of this book; God’s word to you and me, is repent and believe.
Repent— turn away from sin and turn to God.
Believe— Believe that God is who He says He is and that He sent his Son Jesus Christ to save you from your sin so that whoever would believe in him would not perish but have eternal life.
Then Jesus promises that when you repent and believe, that He gives you His Holy Spirit— He comes to live inside of you to give you the power of God to persevere in repentance and faith— To become like Christ!
I am only able to stand here and speak with you today because I know that my grandfather has repented and believed— I know that he has Jesus Christ; I know that he has the Son, and I know that he has eternal life with God. I know that he has been set free because whoever the Son sets free is free indeed!
My grandfather would want you to know that.
Now, some of you may not know this, but my grandfather has a twin brother named Bill. Like my grandfather, for some time he suffered physical infirmity— but on the day that he passed from time and into eternity and went to be with Jesus, he said, “I’m free as a bird! I’m free as a bird!”
And on July 28th, after 90 years, 5 months and 3 1/2 days, my grandfather breathed his last and he was “free as a bird.”
He was freed from the chains of physical illness, freed from pain, freed from worry, freed from the bondage of sin and eternal death — like a vapor, he was gone. But listen! It’s not goodbye it’s I’ll see you later, and I know I can stand here and speak to you I can rejoice because I know where he is!
Every time I would visit, we would close with prayer and he would say, “Alright babe, come see us when you can.”— One day when I breathe my last; when I step out of time and into eternity because I have surrendered to Jesus Christ I’ll see him again. And I rejoice! I’m not sad — don’t you be either — Rejoice!! Rejoice!! Rejoice!!
Honor him by remembering what I believe he would want you to know:
Life is short, so while it is today— seek The Lord while he may be found, repent and believe and then by the power of Christ in you, invest what little time you have in the kingdom of God; in the work of God — for we are saved that through us, God might save someone else.
I thank God, I thank you, and I thank my Grandfather for his investments in my eternity.
I’ll see you soon, Pa!
Repent Believe Persevere