This morning I woke feeling "ahhh, the start of a new week" then I remembered it wasn't a usual Monday, today was the funeral of a very dear friend who lost her battle with breast cancer a couple of weeks ago.
As I got out of bed, feeling rather heavy hearted, I pulled opened the curtains to be greeted by a beautiful rainbow.
It was a wonderful reminder that God keeps His promises.
He has promised so many things, to be with us, not to leave us comfortless, not to give us more than we can bear, a home in heaven where there is no sorrow or pain...this was just the reminder I needed that His promises remain steadfast, as does His love.
It was never going to be an easy day, but it was made more bearable knowing He was in control.
We had heavy rain most of the morning, but also some beautifully bright moments.
My friend arrived in a splendid glass carriage, complete with white horses.
The coffin was a beautiful white basket with wild flowers as the arrangement.
The service was uplifting and encouraging and reminded us that she lived her life as a signpost to the Saviour.
It was of course also emotional, seeing her photograph from happier times looking down on us...
...but being able to look out of this beautiful wall of windows was a lovely reminder that whilst her body is no longer alive, her spirit very much is and she is beyond the skies in heaven now, free from the pain she had suffered.
She will be so very much missed by her 18yr old daughter and her husband of 32years, and of course the many friends that she had.
I think one of the hardest things about funerals, is the driving away and getting on with day to day chores. It almost doesn't feel right...but life does go on. And that is another thing I feel guilty about at times, that I can get on with day to day things, whilst the family's grieving process will take a lot longer, for them the days will be very different for a while.
But we must remember the happy times and the blessings she left behind, as I wrote in our sympathy card...she hasn't gone...just gone ahead.
Jesus said "I am the resurrection and the life, he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live"