The celebration of Rebecca's life was just as you would expect, as embracing as her wonderful hugs and filled with the easiness of her laughter. Family and life long friends were welcoming to those of us who are relatively new friendships in comparison. Their photo display shared the wealth of lovely times between Rebecca and all those she held most near and dear, which was such a treat! I know if it is possible Rebecca was watching us and saying this is what it is all about....everyone I love under one roof with a common goal and all else laid aside.
Donna and Beth spoke about their deep love for Rebecca and what an incredible impact her friendship was to their lives. They shared almost in unison their mutual beliefs and faith and I know just like Rebecca that is where their hope rests. They requested that we all support Allen as he continues to raise their boys, knowing the journey they are embarking on isn't for the faint of heart. Donna reminded Allen of her confidence in his abilities as a father and that while he and Rebecca had their differences they had a strong mutual love for their amazing sons.
Brother Brooks gave a wonderful eulogy, filled with all the heart felt points that Rebecca would have wanted. He spoke of life explaining how Rebecca will never have to die again.She is alive for all eternity, it is us who are daily facing what our friend has already overcome. A few years ago his son passed away and he could imagine them up there together trying to get our attention to let us know they are absolutely fine; not to worry. He encouraged us all to look forward to the day we enter into the true home of our eternity.
The selection of music was perfect: Vince Gill, Go Rest High On That Mountain - Casting Crowns, Oh Glorious Day and Chris Tomlin's version of Amazing Grace. We all know Rebecca had the volume cranked up and was belting out Oh Glorious Day right along with Chris!
Clair spoke about many wonderful times shared with Rebecca and how "everyone" gets mothered by her inexhaustible ability to be strong when there is a vulnerability. I am very glad that she was there and able to articulate these precious moments so that the family and friends who have been there for Rebecca form the majority of her life got a glimpse into the impact that their dear loved one had on others recently.
I spoke about Rebecca's love for words, truth and God's love. Knowing that her hope was unable to be extinguished even in her darkest, most fragile moments because of Christ's victory in her life. I encouraged us all to continue to press on and love as she would, encourage others as she would have, give deep friendship, loyalty, kindness to everyone ......everywhere. That is the example that Rebecca followed and if we are to follow those same foot prints we will be unified in that eternal love which has no beginning or end. I also shared that because of our great loss, we know we are stronger than we thought - ironically we also find we are more fragile than we thought. However, I personally have gained a deeper understanding of my need for Love to be real, and for our faith not to fail. I also shared a piece from CS Lewis's writings - The Problem of Pain. Rebecca used to like me to read to her when she was really stressed or confused she stated that brought her comfort and peace. For what ever reason it had that effect on her I am grateful - and I will be forever blessed by knowing her.
I close with the writing of CS Lewis and pray that you give your journey into the hands of Him that helps us all find comfort:
The golden apple of selfhood, thrown among the false gods, became an apple of discord because they scrambled for it. They did not know the first rule of the holy game, which is that every player must by all means touch the ball and then immediately pass it on. To be found with it in your hands is a fault: to cling to it, death. But when it flies to and fro among the players too swift for eye to follow, and the great master Himself leads the revelry, giving Himself eternally to His creatures in the generation, and back to Himself in the sacrifice, of the Word, then indeed the eternal dance 'makes heaven drowsy with the harmony'. All pains and pleasures we have known on earth are early initiations in the movements of that dance: but the dance itself is strictly incomparable with the sufferings of this present time. As we draw nearer to its uncreated rhythm, pain and pleasure sink almost out of sight. There is joy in the dance, but it does not exist for the sake of joy. It does not even exist for the sake of good, or of love. It is Love Himself, and Good Himself, and therefore happy. It does not exist for us, but we for it.
I know that Rebecca knew she was created first and foremost for Him alone to have a relationship with, all the rest is icing on a heavenly cake!