A Personal Testimony

New JerusalemAbraham eagerly waited for, sought, and longed for the city of foundations, New Jerusalem, in the new creation, the better country (Hebrews 11:10, 14, 16). Abraham and Sarah lived in a tent, about which the Bible gives no description. However, the whole of Genesis 23 is devoted to the purchase and description of their burial place.

At the start of this year [2014] my wife, Karen, and I had no idea what awaited us. In mid January she was hospitalized. After a week she was transferred to intensive care. I was apprehensive about the outcome of these events. At that time the Lord spoke to me through Hebrews 11:8, “By faith Abraham, being called…went out, not knowing where he was going.”

I realized, and Karen agreed, that we were on a journey with the Lord, not knowing where we were going and not knowing when we would arrive. With this realization, my apprehension vanished. I was willing to go by faith, not knowing.

After four weeks of hospitalization, Karen went to a convalescent home, where she stayed for six weeks. During the latter weeks she faced a decision about medical treatment. She had her preference but always stated it with “probably.”

During the tenth week of this journey the Lord visited us strongly as we were together reading Genesis. Verse 12:1 says, “Go from your land…to the land that I will show you.” That day we did not understand what the Lord was speaking to us but within two days she was certain, and I too, that the Lord was calling her out of this present existence to be with Him in paradise. At this point Karen knew she had received a decision from the Lord. There was no longer a medical decision to consider and she never again said “probably.” She also testified, “I am not afraid to die.”

She came home with hospice care. We expected some weeks before her death but she died one week after realizing what the Lord spoke. I believe that this quickness shows that the timing was of the Lord, not man. (She died three days after coming home; in the Bible “three days” indicates resurrection.) She is asleep in Christ. A week later we buried her to await the resurrection at the Lord’s visible return, as presented in 1 Thessalonians 4:13-16, and to await, like Abraham and Sarah and many others, the better country with the New Jerusalem.

one year later

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13 Comments

  1. Beatriz

     /  May 9, 2014

    Thanks for the encouragement. As I recently read in a post,
    “The cave of Machpelah in Hebron is the gateway to the New Jerusalem….Sarah was not simply buried in the cave of Machpelah; she is now sleeping there, waiting for the day when she will wake up and find herself in the New Jerusalem.
    May we be those who follow Abraham’s pattern, giving more attention to the new creation and New Jerusalem than ……” our earthly life.

    Grace be with us!

    >

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    • Thank you for your encouragement to me. Thank the Lord that we can seek New Jerusalem now.

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  2. Dear brother Don. Your post is most encouraging. Come quickly, Lord Jesus!!

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  3. Ezra Paik

     /  May 10, 2014

    Dear Don,
    Your testimony reminds me of a hymn written by sister M.E. Barber as below:

    1. He looked for a city and lived in a tent,
    A pilgrim to glory right onward he went;
    God’s promise his solace, so royal his birth,
    No wonder he sought not the glories of earth.

    City! O city fair!
    God’s dwelling with man to eternity is there.

    2. He looked for a city, his God should prepare;
    No mansion on earth, could he covet or share,
    For had not God told him, that royal abode
    Awaited His pilgrims on ending the road.

    3. He looked for a city; if sometimes he sighed
    To be trudging the road, all earth’s glory denied,
    The thought of that city changed sighing to song,
    For the road might be rough, but it could not be long.

    4. He looked for a city, his goal, Lord, we share
    And know that bright city, which Thou dost prepare
    Is ever our portion, since willing to be
    Just pilgrims with Jesus, our roof a tent tree.

    New Jerusalem is the unique and ultimate goal & meaning of our life and work on this earth.
    “The vision of eternity is the vision of the New Jerusalem.”
    “The life of eternity is the living out of the New Jerusalem.”
    “The work of eternity is the working out of the New Jerusalem.”
    Amen.

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  4. Music for the hymn above is at http://www.hymnal.net/en/hymn/h/974

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  5. Thank you for sharing your testimony, brother Don. How sweet that all of our experiences in following the Lord and gaining the Lord in the midst of our human life on earth are truly just for living out and working out the New Jerusalem.

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  6. Brother Don: We were encouraged by your testimony. Thanks for sharing. We all need this kind of shepherding. We were specially impressed by..: “During the tenth week of this journey the Lord visited us strongly as we were together reading Genesis. Verse 12:1 says, “Go from your land…to the land that I will show you.” That day we did not understand what the Lord was speaking to us but within two days she was certain, and I too, that the Lord was calling her out of this present existence to be with Him in paradise. At this point Karen knew she had received a decision from the Lord. There was no longer a medical decision to consider and she never again said “probably.” She also testified, “I am not afraid to die.” Amen. We are the Lord’s.

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  7. Bob Little

     /  April 17, 2017

    Dear Don:

    Yesterday, when I was blending with he church in Irving I met afresh a brother and his wife after the meeting that are presently meeting with them. Steve Clark and his wife, not the Steve Clark,a lot of saints know. In the early years they came into Hall 3 in LA. In the course of our fellowship, he apparently had not heard, that Mary, my wife went to be with the Lord on September 24, 2016. This reminded him of your wife and he related it to me and said you had a blog and your personal testimony of the situation in Karen’s passing. I never heard about Karen’s going to be with the Lord and told him we had you in our home many different times through the past years. He forwarded it to me and I have just finished reading it. I appreciated your testimony together and the Lord’s supply to you as you passed this milestone.

    In fellowship with the coworkers over about 1 1/2 years we were led of the Lord to move to Arlington, Tx in July 2014. The Lord through our children helped us to own our first house and it is in a gated community within a 5 minute walk from our youngest daughter and a 5 minute drive from our son, Tom, and famiiy. All was peaceful and we were feeling like we were at a restful resort, because at our morning breakfast table each morning as we were enjoying the Lord in His word we could see a big open green field with trees and a train, faithfully, going night and day, in the background. We had 2 bird feeders and a bird bath and enjoyed watching the birds enjoy themselves eating and bathing.

    Went to a Dr. in mid September and he took all the normal tests and week later called us back in for the report. He said, “Mary, you are anemic and I do not want to say you have cancer, but the blood cells in your blood are unusually large, which is a sign you might have “multiple myeloma”. This is a cancer of the blood in the bone marrow. He recommended an oncologist and by the end of October confirmed she did have it. One Dr. told us early on, “that if you were to choose a cancer this is probably the best one to choose, because now this cancer is treatable, but not curable.”

    After much prayer and fellowship with all the family we began to go forward with the treatment and the Lord gave us many “rhema” words through the whole process and I was fully believing the Lord was going to give us maybe another 5-10 years together, but God!
    About a week before she passed we all wanted her to be at home (she had been in and out of the hospital) in hospice and the Dr. said she had a week or week and a half. We called all the family to come, all the children, many of the grand children and one great grand daughter spoke with her and had some good quality time,mutually. After we got her home, she was gone in less than 24 hours. She finished her course peacefully with all the family around singing, praising, and thanking Him for His faithfulness.

    This had been the first death in the Bob Little side of the family and to loose Mary has been a tremendous adjustment for me. We were together over 61 years and nine months and were really one, loving, serving,visiting, sheparding, and praying for the saints, the churches, His move and the carrying out of His economy. Of course, He is supplying and giving the grace a day at a time. His word yesterday to me “to die is gain” applies for those who are “living Christ”. This is and has been our definite pursuit for many years. So now, Don we are brothers who can really understand and care for one another in the loss of our companions. Lord Jesus come quickly! Sorry, for the long letter, but it helps to unload again.

    Yours in Christ,

    Bob

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    • Brother Bob,
      Brother Steve found me at ITERO and spoke with me. Thank the Lord that he saw me; I did not see him. Both he and Leah were in our home multiple times, starting several years before they were married.
         Thank you for your testimony. Wow, 61+ years is so long. We had 44½ years and say amen to the Lord’s arrangement. About 6 months after Karen’s passing a FT campus brother moved into my home. I am so glad he is here. And the FT team for the local Cal State U campus meets in my home 4 or 5 mornings a week. I am with them the first half of their time together. I also teach at midage training one day per week, eat lunch with trainees, and join their small group prayer after lunch. It is a long drive but the atmosphere there is so rich that it is worth the drive.
         Grace be with you and all the family members around you.

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  1. A Personal Testimony | New Jerusalem - the Consummation
  2. A Personal Testimony | New Jerusalem - the Consummation

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