In memory of FAANS KLOPPERS, a dear friend.
Towards the end of this year matric students in South Africa wrote their school leaving examinations. One of the moms on my school prayer WhatsApp group sent a message wishing those of us who had children writing exams, good luck. I replied that my daughter was writing her first exam that afternoon at 14h00. Another mom, whose child is also in matric thought they were writing at 9:00am that morning. Her child had misread the exam timetable.
The mom sent me a message, thanking me for putting the time of the exam on the prayer group that morning. She then added:
“That was a good work which God prepared in advance for you to do”.
It stopped me in my tracks…and I replied that that was such a lovely way of seeing things.
She answered “I believe that is the reality. He is even in the little things”.
The following verse immediately became a whole lot clearer to me:
“For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” Ephesians 2:10
God knows the number of hairs on our heads, so I am not sure why I was so surprised, that He would be able to place it on someone’s heart to wish matrics good luck and to place it on my heart to write the time of the exam in reply.
This incident was brought back to me recently.
A good friend of ours was admitted into hospital as he was struggling to breathe. His family were not allowed to go past the Emergency doors because of COVID, so they had to watch as he was wheeled away and then rely on messages from the doctors who were treating their dad.
Our daughter, Sarah, is a Theatre Sister at the hospital where our friend was admitted on a Wednesday night. He was 95 years old, a Godly giant of a man. A man my husband and I had come to love and honour and who was a mentor to us in Christ. Our children also respected him.
Sarah was on duty that Thursday morning and as soon as I heard that he had been admitted I sent a message telling her. When she saw the message she immediately went in search of him. He was already with the Lord when she found him but she asked the nurses on duty whether she could prepare him and stay with him for a while. They graciously handed her his ring and clothing and asked her to contact the family.
Earlier that morning God had already prepared Sarah’s heart to do a good work. She was able to break the news to his family, tell them that their dad had been on oxygen and had been made comfortable in the hours of his stay as relayed to her by the staff.
She could tell them that their dad’s face was peaceful, that he was at rest and that she had known him in life and was now caring for him in death.
When she got off duty she took his clothes and ring to his family and spent some time with them.
The good work that Sarah had been prepared for brought immense comfort to the family.
Members of his family messaged me afterwards to tell me how much it had meant to them to know that their dad had been cared for with such diligence by the nursing staff. One member wrote:
“When we commended her for her service in difficult circumstances, she said, very simply: ‘That’s just what I do’. Those words apply to whatever any of us does, wherever we are in our service to Christ, just as dad did”.
And those last few words summed up her dad’s life.
Whatever he had done in his life he had done it as a service to Christ. His life reflected God’s love and wisdom to all those he met.
He was definitely God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God had prepared in advance for him to do.
We grieve with hope in the sure knowledge that we will be reunited one day.