The way I see it, it hurts when you lose loved ones.
I was privileged to attend the funeral service of the late Hyacinth Newton, on Thursday of this week and I could empathize with the grief-stricken faces of her children, grandchildren and other loved ones.
I have been there—done that!
Her eulogy suggests that she was a hard-working Christian woman, who also loved to laugh and make people laugh. So, it goes without saying that she will be sorely missed.
At that funeral service, I finally caught up with Lewis Newton, my cousin and childhood friend, who some years ago, literally vanished off the face of the earth. I mean, one week we were chatting as usual and by the other week, the man ups and gone.
Well I newa!
Somehow, his whereabouts seemed to be a secret and I heard nothing further from him. No WhatsApp; no email – nothing. Then Lewis shows up at his sister in law’s funeral service. We greeted each other like old times and he later explained what had transpired and how he was faring etc and I understood. It brought back many memories.
Oh, how I would love to find that picture that someone took of the two of us, keenly watching a cricket match, at Zion school. We were probably around five or six then, but you don’t want to see the intensity with which we were watching the game!
Both of us later excelled at Cricket in Zion and through High school but after High school, we went our separate ways. He went into Cricket in a big way-making the Nevis team and so on and I went into calypso. We supported each other.
I was at Grove Park for his first four innings. If I remember correctly, he got out in the 30’s four consecutive times.
He, on the other hand, came to Market Shop to hear me release my first set of calypsoes publicly, with my good friend PAPER Hendrickson on guitar. He also attended the Calypso shows that I participated in. He was there that first time that I was crowned calypso King of Nevis. The night when I performed ‘Promised Land,’ to a packed audience, dressed up in one of the Acolyte’s gowns, smuggled from Father Blant’s Vestry, with some assistance from his father, the late, revered, Melford Newton.
Such good friends were we, that when I went off to St. Lucia to pursue a course of study in Public Health, Lewis went off to Jamaica to pursue higher education as well. There he made a name for himself.
Those days we had no email and smartphones etc. So, I looked forward anxiously to his letters every week. Each letter would have a detailed report on his most recent matches and newspaper clippings as ready proof. I knew about every fifty he made there and every century and when he gave Courtney Walsh some good cuff in a particular game… I was kept updated man!
Well I newa!
I knew when he came back from Jamaica with all of the wonderful stats, he was only included in the Leewards trials, as a standby and yet he was the only one to handle a certain Curtly Ambrose with any degree of certainty. He actually scored a fifty in the trials and was not selected to the Leewards team.
So with Lewis back, it felt good to see my old buddy again.
I can well imagine what it will be like, if we are faithful, to see our loved ones who have died after Jesus returns to clean up this earth. Of course, at funeral services, some persons normally throw around some wrong doctrines. For instance, you will hear things like: ‘He is up in heaven looking down at us’ or ‘She is up there now, singing in the heavenly choir.’
Well, my bible tells me differently:
Psalms 146:4 – His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish.
The hope we have though is found in this text:
1 Thessalonians 4:16 – For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:’
So our loved ones who have died, have gone to SLEEP, until Jesus returns to take them with him to heaven or to condemn them to a fiery hell.
For now, they are DEAD. They can’t help us nor hurt us. They are DEAD and no amount of dreams and fabrications from Satan can bring them back.
What we need to do, is to live in accordance with God’s principles, by his grace and one day, all of the faithful ones will reunite in heaven at last. I want to be in that number. Dear reader, I wish the same for you.
That’s the way I see it. How do you see it?